Nigeria: Vision 2020 document is ready for inauguration – FG

0 0
Read Time:2 Minute, 19 Second

The final copy of the country‘s Vision 2020 document, an economic transformation blueprint that is expected to launch Nigeria into the league of the 20 most developed economies of the world by the year 2020, is ready, the Minister in charge of National Planning, who is also the Deputy Chairman, National Planning Commission, Dr.Shamsudeen Usman, has said.

Usman, who disclosed this during the inauguration of the Joint Planning Commission for the 16th Nigerian Economic Summit in Abuja on Friday, said that the document would be officially inaugurated by President Goodluck Jonathan soon.

This year‘s summit, tagged, ”Nigeria at 50: The Challenge of Visionary Leadership and Good Governance”, is expected to take place by October.

He said that the Federal Government had concluded the last phase of the preparation of the first four-year implementation plan.

According to Usman, ”The final copy of the Vision 20: 2020 had been ready since October last year; only that it was yet to be officially inaugurated. It will be officially inaugurated by President Jonathan as soon as his approval has been given. The current administration is committed to repositioning Nigeria to join the league of 20 largest economies in the world by the year 2020.”

He said that the economic transformation blueprint was developed with the active involvement of stakeholders from the three tiers of government and the private sector, including members of the NESG and the donor community.

He said,” The implementation of the Vision 20:2020 is currently in full swing with the last phase of the preparation of the first four-year implementation plan being concluded.”

He added that this year‘s summit will improve on the success recorded during the 2009 event, noting that the government would provide the necessary assistance to ensure a hitch-free summit.

He said, ”The efficacy of public private partnerships has been proven in both developed and emerging markets, leading to unprecedented growth and development in a number of countries all over the world. The Joint Planning Committee will work under the joint coordination of the NESG and National Planning Commission.”

Speaking at the event, the Director General, NESG, Mr. Frank Nweke Jr., said that this year‘s summit would witness a remarkable improvement over the previous ones, adding that the event would provide a veritable platform for providing workable solutions to the country‘s numerous economic challenges.

He said, ”All over the world, various governments have realized the efficacy of the partnership between the public and private sector in order to achieve economic growth and development.” This year‘s summit will be a remarkable improvement from that of last year in terms of providing workable solutions to the myriads of economic problems facing our country”

About Post Author

Anthony-Claret Ifeanyi Onwutalobi

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
Happy
0 0 %
Sad
0 0 %
Excited
0 0 %
Sleepy
0 0 %
Angry
0 0 %
Surprise
0 0 %

2011: IBrahim Babangida, Atiku kick as PDP backs Jonathan Goodluck

0 0
Read Time:16 Minute, 21 Second
On-line registration dropped
Obasanjo absent at NEC
Party chair visits Ogun Monday
Akala engages Adeojo in shouting match

THE coast is now clear for President Goodluck Jonathan to contest the 2011 elections. As rightly published yesterday by the Nigerian Compass, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has given the President the ‘green light’ to continue to occupy the Aso Rock Presidential Villa, Abuja, beyond May 29, next year.

The decision was taken at the National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting yesterday at the party’s national headquarters, Abuja.

Although the party declared that the controversial zoning formula would remain “from the federal to state levels”, it said Jonathan “because of special circumstances”, would use the Yar’Adua/Jonathan ticket, which brought the party to power after the exit of former President Olusegun Obasanjo on May 29, 2007, for the 2011 elections.

Former President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua died on May 5, 2010.

But, in a swift reaction, former Military President, General Ibrahim Babangida (rtd) and former Vice-President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, said the decision to allow Jonathan use the Yar’Adua ticket would not work because “Jonathan is not a Northerner”.

As part of his memo to the NEC, the National Chairman, Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo, said that Jonathan, “who is part and parcel of the late Umaru Musa Yar’Adua mandate, has a right to contest the remaining of that joint ticket in 2011″.

He explained that in the zoning arrangement, the party didn’t envisage that a serving President would die in office, adding that “unfortunately, we lost our dear President.”

He, however, said that the party had not discarded zoning.

He also apologised to those hurt by the reforms being undertaken by the leadership of the party.

He said: “Today, Dr Goodluck Jonathan, by the dictate of our constitution, is exercising the term of a joint mandate given by the people of our great country. If our late President were alive today, we wouldn’t be contesting his right to run for a second term under our national constitution. It was his entitlement.

“But, Dr Jonathan who is part and parcel of that mandate, has a right to contest the remaining of that joint ticket in 2011. This will, of course, not exclude any other aspirant from any part of the country from contesting the presidential primaries as it has become the custom of our party.”

In his remark at the NEC meeting, Jonathan appealed to members to accept the memo being presented by Nwodo with a consensus warning that there was no need for members to result to fisticuff.

Jonathan also canvassed for a free and fair primaries that would be in the mould of the Jos convention held by the party in 1998.

He said: “ The memo that comes from the chairman, we normally use consensus. We don’t stay here and box ourselves and we must maintain that tradition because that is one of the good things we must bequeath to the next generation and we will disappoint Nigerians that we will box ourselves and burn down our houses.

“We will work together as a party because what happens in the PDP happens in the whole country.”

As predicted by the Nigerian Compass yesterday, Obasanjo was absent. Also, former minister, Malam Adamu Ciroma, did not attend the meeting.

Nwodo, who said he was presenting some of the resolutions reached at the Board of Trustees (BoT) and the enlarged caucus meetings, also canvassed for members’ support on the reforms being embarked upon by the party, particularly the online-registration of members and the special convention that would be conveyed to amend the party’s constitution.

His words: “In my inaugural speech, I promised to bring on board, some fundamental reforms that are geared towards restoring internal democracy in our party.

“I promised to bring the first administrative and ICT tools to catapault our party to internationally-accepted best practices of doing things. In this connection, we have concluded designs with our consultants on how to reposition our party administration for increased efficiency and productivity.

“We have also concluded with professional artisans on how to reinvent our party ideology and the dreams of the founding fathers, based on our manifesto which is our covenant with the Nigerian people to prepare our candidates for future elections and for service delivery to our people, to bring to the fore our solutions to poverty, hunger and unemployment and submit ourselves and our party to the total improvement of the infrastructure necessary to transform our country to a modern nation that will be the pride of all black men on earth and to the envy of all nation.

“We have enunciated the advantages of this earth-breaking innovations. It would not only provide the much needed data base for running our party, but it will provide us the fund to deal with the day -to- day management of our party. We have planned to run this programme for the next one year before discarding the present manual register .

“It has become imperative, due to the new Electoral Act to hold a special convention and bi-annual conference to update our party constitution before the primary election. Already, the constitution amendment notices have gone out, but additional notices would follow to capture the changes in the Electoral Act and other areas.

“Today, we will be asking NEC to roll out these reforms as the party has discussed the issue of zoning through the organs of the party and the informed view is that PDP has entrenched in its constitution zoning and rotation of public offices in the spirit of fairness, equity and justice.

“The PDP, as a responsible organisation, is responsive to the spirit and letters of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria which enjoins the practice of federal character in the distribution of public offices.

“The misconception, accusations that PDP has abandoned zoning is very far from the truth. When our President emerged, he chose a northern muslim as his vice president ; when the chairman resigned, he was replaced by another chairman from the South-East. Our Senate President, Speaker, Deputy Senate President and Deputy Speaker are from various zones of the country.

“At the state level, we encourage rotation of our governors among the three senatorial zones in our state. How then can PDP be said to have abandoned zoning or rotation?

“In the 2011 presidential primary, we are faced with unforeseen circumstances, which can only be likened to a national crisis we faced recently when our late President Umaru Musa Yar`Adua was ill and couldn’t transfer power to the then vice president, Dr Goodluck Jonathan.

“The country rose to the occasion and parliament successfully transmitted power to the Vice President as Acting President. In the zoning arrangement, we didn’t envisage that a serving President would die in office. Unfortunately, we lost our dear President.

“Today, Dr Goodluck Jonathan, by the dictate of our constitution, is exercising the term of a joint mandate, given by the people of our great country. If our late President were alive today, we wouldn’t be contesting his right to run for a second term under our national constitution. It was his entitlement.

“But, Dr Jonathan, who is part and parcel of that mandate has a right to contest the remaining of that joint ticket in 2011. This will, of course, not exclude any other aspirant from any part of the country from contesting the presidential primary as it has become the custom of our party.

“You will all recall that this scenario played out in the past in Adamawa State in the case of his Excellency, Atiku Abubakar and His Excellency Boni Haruna. This was when Atiku Abubakar was nominated as the running mate to President Obasanjo. Boni Haruna, in spite of the court challenge to deny him that mandate, was adjudged by the courts as the right beneficiary of that ticket and he went on to do two terms as governor of Adamawa State.

“I know that reforms are sometimes hard to accept, especially when we are called upon to abandon old ways of doing things.

“Furthermore, in preaching these reforms, we may have hurt the sensibility of some of our members. We thereby present our unreserved apology. But, we however, continue to appeal that these reforms be accepted by all our party members”.

Jonathan, who said that the controversies generated by the zoning is not unusual in an emerging democracy, added: “Whereever two people stay, they must disagree. Husband and wife must disagree, siblings belonging to the same parents must disagree and as a party, we must disagree but what makes us strong is that we have the ability to resolve our differences. We normally resolve our differences through dialogue.”

Jonathan said: “When we are getting close to elections, this party secretariat normally receive visitors from all parts of the country, truck loads of youths and women. We normally have cases of turbulences at the state level and even as I am coming in now, I saw a group of people with placards. It reminds me about 2003 and 2007 when we were getting close to elections.

“This party secretariat normally receive visitors from all parts of the country with trucks of women and youths with placards, carrying various inscriptions. I think this year is even better as because when I listen across the country, we have to give thanks to God. We have to thank the leadership too.

“I know the challenges are there and they must be there. Because that is the essence of politics. And whereever two people stay, they must disagree. Husband and wife must disagree, siblings belonging to the same parents must disagree and as a party, we must disagree, but what makes us strong is that we have the ability to resolve our differences. We normally resolve our differences through dialogue. We don’t come to NEC meetings and start shouting at ourselves. We have never done that and we will not do that.

“Every country is controlled by their laws and their conventions. Not everything is written, not everything is documented, but in most cases, parties that are ready to move forward, when we follow the law strictly, lawyers will just be pushing you left and right.

“So, whatever differences we have in our states, we have the ability to resolve amicably because we need to do that and we have no choice. We must carry all party leaders along for us to win elections. Just as we have been preaching, that the party is very supportive and the governors are supportive and the National Assembly is supportive, the leaders are supportive and everybody is supportive.

“Others look at us as if we cannot conduct elections that are acceptable. To some extent, we are doing fairly well. But at the end of the elections, the number of us that go to court are so many. The way the court gives the judgement, some times, we don’t understand. And certain things are in the public domain and any judgement that is given enters the newspapers and it is in the internet.

“Anybody that goes to court is in the papers already. The feeling is that our elections are very turbulent, even when we don’t have a crisis, we have created a crisis. This time around, we conduct the elections in a way that only very few people will want to go to court.

“PDP has the mechanism to resolve its crisis and when we say that some people query us and I always said that if politics is all about numbers, then PDP still controls more than majority of this country and if we control more than majority of this country, then we can always predict our elections.

“But in most cases, when people want us to have crisis in our elections, the faction that is disgruntled will first of all give their votes to another person. Even though, they will regret later. But in anger, they will dash their votes out. But finally, it will turn back to hit them and they will regret, but by God’s grace, we will be resolving our crisis internally. We will not argue it in the public.

“Just look at the issue of zoning or no zoning, it is PDP primaries, whether we zone or don’t zone, it is our own internal affairs. But, the debate is even being spearheaded more by none PDP members. That shows that what happens in PDP, in fact they already conceded the presidency to us.

“Otherwise, they have no business coming to join our own debate. That means they have already known that the PDP will produce the President of this country.”

The online-registration led to a rowdy session and it was eventually dropped. Nwodo’s position on zoning was adopted overwhelmingly. The motion to adopt it was moved by Shema and seconded by Anenih.

The President also directed Nwodo to go to Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital on Monday to resolve the crisis in the state chapter of the party.

A source at the meeting said: “The Ogun State party chairman, Elder Joju Fadairo was at the meeting as the authentic chairman. Nwodo did not bring the Ogun State matter up at the NEC meeting but said the President had directed him to go to Abeokuta, the state capital to resolve the crisis on Monday.

“There was a motion challenging the power of the NWC to dissolve state excos without due process but Nwodo did not allow the motion, insisting that he has not brought Ogun State matter to the NWC yet. The implication is that Ogun State exco remains intact which is victory for the rule of law and victory for democracy and the truth. You know an Abuja High Court and Abeokuta High Court on Wednesday stopped the party from tampering with the Abia and Ogun chapters.

“On the proposed amendment to the PDP constitution and manisfesto, a committee was formed to look into and study it carefully.

“The NEC also ratified the coming of Governor Theodore Orji of Abia State into the party and directed that all incoming members to the party, including the governor, can contest for any post. The brand repositioning of the party was also approved.”

Also at the meeting, the festering crisis that has engulfed the Oyo State chapter of the PDP reared its ugly head as Governor Adebayo Alao-Akala openly demanded for the exit of the former Deputy National Chairman, Alhaji Yekini Adeojo.

The drama took place before the commencement of the meeting when Alao-Akala walked straight to Adeojo, who was already seated 40 minutes before the arrival of the governor, and started shouting: “Don’t let me disgrace you. I am the governor of the state. I don’t know you as a PDP member. Get out of this place,”

After the first round of embarrassment and with Adeojo not even responding, the governor came back to Adeojo who is also a member of the BoT alongside the PDP National Publicity Secretary, Prof. Ahmed Rufai Alkali. The visibly-angry Alao-Akala asked Alkali how Adeojo found himself inside the hall.

The governor thundered again: “You can’t be here. You have ceased to be a member of our party. You have to leave or I will disgrace you. I am the Governor of Oyo State and the leader of the party and I don’t know you.”

Responding, Alkali simply asked the governor to take it easy and they left, just as Adeojo never uttered a word to the furious governor.

Adeojo later told reporters: “I am a member of BoT, a complete member of PDP NEC. I don’t need to take permission from the governor before attending NEC meeting”.

At the meeting, security was unusually tight. State Security Service (SSS) operatives took over the venue, searching people.

Because of the heavy security, reporters were almost barred from the venue.

At the meeting were Jonathan; Vice-President Namadi Sambo; Nwodo and other members of the NWC including former chairmen Dr. Ahmadu Ali; Prince Vincent Ogbulafor; Chief Barnabas Gemade; Chief Solomon Lar; Second Republic Vice-President, Dr. Alex Ekweme; Senate President, David Mark; his deputy, Ike Ekweremadu; Speaker of the House of Representatives, Dimeji Bankole; Deputy Speaker Bayero Nafada; former Board of Trustees (BoT) Chairman, Chief Tony Anenih and former Deputy Senate President, Alhaji Ibrahim Mantu.

Governors present included Adebayo Alao-Akala (Oyo); Aliyu Wamakko (Sokoto); Martins Elechi (Ebonyi); Godswill Akpabio (Akwa Ibom); Babangida Aliyu (Niger); Sullivan Chime (Enugu); Sule Lamido (Jigawa); Timipre Silva (Bayelsa); Murtala Nyako (Adamawa); Ibrahim Shema (Katsina); Ikedi Ohakim (Imo); Gbenga Daniel (Ogun); Rotimi Amaechi (Rivers); Akwe Doma (Nasarawa); Olagunsoye Oyinlola (Osun); Segun Oni (Ekiti); Emmanuel Uduaghan (Delta); Isa Yuguda (Bauchi); Danjuma Goje (Gombe); Bukola Saraki (Kwara); Liyel Imoke (Cross River); Gabriel Suswam (Benue); Saidu Dakingari (Kebbi); Aliyu Shinkafi (Zamfara); Deputy Governor Ramalan Yero (Kaduna) and Mrs. Pauline Tallen (Plateau).

Others included Senators Annie Okonkwo; Lee Maeba; Osita Isunazo; Nicholas Yahaya Ugbane; Dr. Samuel Ogbemudia; Chief Ebenezer Babatope; Professor Jerry Gana; Alhaji Adamu Hassan; Senator Walid Jibrin; Senator Stella Omu; Major-General Muhammadu Magoro (rtd); Senator Abubakar Sodangi; Shuaibu Oyedokun; Nana Aisha Kadiri; Alhaji Yekini Adeojo; Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu; Dr. Kashim Ibrahim Imam; Hajia Hauwa Kida; Mrs Christy Silas; Hajia Rabi Mukhtar Mohammed; Garba Matazu; Farouk Lawal and Atai Idoko, among others.

Declaring his opposition to the zoning arrangement, Babangida said his presidential ambition was not based on it.

The Minna-born soldier-turned-politician said despite the party’s position, Nigerians will eventually decide the President next year.

Babangida’s spokesman, Kazeem Afegbua, said that his boss is not bothered about “the hullabaloo surrounding the zoning arrangement but in providing good governance for the teeming population”.

Afegbua, who maintained that the General was only interested in how to make the country work, disclosed that his boss would not be bothered about “the proviso that has no impact on the lives of average Nigerians”.

“General Babangida remains in the race. He did not join the race because of zoning; he is running because he believes he can give better leadership and has better experience and knowledge to confront the daunting challenges facing us as a nation.

“He knows how to set the priorities right and practical knowledge to make things work in Nigeria. We are not interested in any proviso. We are interested in Nigeria and the electorate. We are interested in the stability and unity of Nigeria,” he declared.

Atiku said there was no way a non-Northerner would be allowed to use the ticket of a Northerner.

One of his aides said: “The Turaki is going ahead with his presidential ambition, irrespective of PDP’s stance.

“What we know is that Alhaji Atiku Abubakar is going to contest next year and Nigerians will vote for him.

“Yar’Adua’s term is ending next year. Jonathan is completing that one. Another Northerner will continue that mandate, not a non-Northerner. Zoning stands”.

By Lateef Ibrahim, Ayodele Adegbuyi, Abuja & Victor Oriola

About Post Author

Anthony-Claret Ifeanyi Onwutalobi

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
Happy
0 0 %
Sad
0 0 %
Excited
0 0 %
Sleepy
0 0 %
Angry
0 0 %
Surprise
0 0 %

Jonathan Goodluck can contest for president 2011 -PDP

0 0
Read Time:8 Minute, 55 Second

ABUJA— THE National Executive Committee, NEC, of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, yesterday, ratified the decision of the Board of Trustees, BoT, and its extended caucus to sustain the zoning and rotation arrangement of the party, just as it said that President Goodluck Jonathan should contest for the 2011 Presidential election.

At the end of the NEC meeting, members agreed that zoning and rotation must remain in the best interest of the country at this level of development in line with the Party’s constitution .They also said that other persons can contest for the position at the party’s primaries as in 2003 when the likes of late Abubakar Rimi ran against former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

The NEC members said that President Jonathan should contest and remain in office till 2015, because the present ticket was a continuation of late President Umaru Yar’Adua’s.

Rising from its 52nd National Executive Committee meeting held at the party’s conference hall, the members also killed the online registration project of the National Chairman, Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo.

The online registration project was flagged off by President Jonathan last Monday as part of Nwodo’s reforms for the Party. The meeting which started at 1.40 pm with an opening prayer said by the former governor of Old Bendel State, Dr. Samuel Ogbemudia after President Jonathan entered the venue of the meeting at 1.38 pm, ended at 6.30pm after what was termed a serious brainstorming and stormy session.

The party said that the issue of zoning must be adopted at all levels from the wards, local and state. Though, there was no briefing by the party at the end of the meeting, it was gathered that the meeting did not go smoothly as the governors reportedly confronted the national chairman of the party over his reforms which they described as not friendly to them.

Rationale behind reforms

Vanguard learnt that the National Chairman explained the rationale behind his reforms, but that he could not convince the governors.

It was also gathered that motion for the adoption of zoning and rotation staying in the party was moved by the Katsina State Governor and seconded by former Chairman, Board of Trustees, BoT, Chief Tony Anenih.

According to a source who was at the meeting, the governors and state chairmen of the party also said that the National Working Committee, NWC, of the party did not have the constitutional right to sack a state Executive of the party, stressing that such issues must be referred to NEC.

It was learnt that the dissolution of Ogun State Exco came up and the National Chairman made a u_turn and promised to visit Ogun State on Monday to meet with stakeholders of the party.

On the online registration, it was gathered that members including Governors Gabriel Suswan of Benue, Emmanuel Uduaghan of Delta and Timipre Sylva of Bayelsa spoke against it.

They reportedly argued that those in the rural areas might not be able to afford the N1,200 and that considering the time frame when the party is preparing for election, the project may not be possible.

Even when Chief Tony Anenih and Samuel Ogbemudia tried to defend the online registration project that it could work as a pilot scheme and be made to go side by side with the current mode of registration, the arguments still did not save the situation.

Kwara State Governor, Dr. Bukola Saraki, reportedly moved a motion to rest the project and this was seconded by one of the PDP Chairmen from the South west, to finally lay the project to rest.

Nothing stops Jonathan from running—Nwodo

Speaking at the meeting, Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo said, yesterday, that nothing stopped President Goodluck Jonathan from running the 2011 presidential election.

He said that President Jonathan was currently enjoying a joint ticket of late President Umaru Yar’Adua, adding that if the late President were to be alive today, he would have contested and rounded off in 2015.

Nwodo who spoke at the 52nd National Executive Committee, NEC, meeting of the party, noted that contesting the 2011 presidential election was President Jonathan’s entitlement.

He said: “The PDP as a responsible organization is responsive to the spirit and letters of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria which enjoins the practice of federal character in the distribution of public offices.

“The misconception, accusations that PDP has abandoned zoning is very far from the truth. When our president emerged, he chose a northern Muslim as his vice president .

When the chairman resigned, he was replaced by another chairman from the south eastern zone. Our Senate president, speaker, deputy Senate president and deputy speaker are from different zones of the country.

“At the state level, we encourage rotation of our governors among the three senatorial zones in our state. How then can PDP be said to have abandoned zoning or rotation?

In the  2011 presidential primaries, we were faced with unforeseen circumstances, which can only be likened to a national crisis we faced recently when our late President Umaru Musa Yar`Adua was ill and couldn’t transfer power to the then Vice President, Dr Goodluck Jonathan.

“The country rose to the occasion and parliament successfully transmitted power to the vice president as actingPresident. In the zoning arrangement, we didn’t envisage that a serving president would die in office, unfortunately we lost our dear president.

You will all recall that this scenario played out in the past in Adamawa State in the case of Atiku Abubakar and Boni Haruna. This was when Atiku Abubakar was nominated as the running mate to President Obasanjo.

Right beneficiary

“Boni Haruna, in spite of the court challenge to deny him that mandate was adjudged by the courts as right beneficiary of that ticket and he went on to do two terms as governor of Adamawa State. Today Dr. Goodluck Jonathan by the dictate of our constitution is exercising the term of a joint mandate, given by the people of our great country.

If our late president were alive today, we wouldn’t be contesting his right to run for a second term under our national constitution. It was his entitlement.

“But Dr. Jonathan who is part and parcel of that mandate has a right to contest the remaining of that joint ticket in 2011. This will, of course, not exclude any other aspirant from any part of the country from contesting the presidential primary, as it has become the custom of our party.”

Nwodo who intimated NEC members of planned reforms for the party, especially in the areas of updating the manifesto, said: “It has become imperative, due to the new Electoral Act to hold a special convention and bi-annual conference to update our party constitution before the primary election.

Already the constitutional amendment notices have gone out, but additional notices would follow to capture the changes in the Electoral Act and other areas.

“Today, we will be asking NEC to approve to roll out these reforms as the party has discussed the issue of zoning through the organs of the party and the informed view is that PDP has entrenched in its constitution zoning and rotation of public offices in the spirit of fairness, equity and justice.”

Zoning debate a negation of Nigerian nationhood—Anyaoku

Meantime, former Commonwealth Secretary-General, Chief Emeka Anyaoku, has described the raging zoning debate as a negation of Nigerian nationhood, saying that the zoning that occurred in 1998/99 was a unique national crisis engendered by June 12 annulment.

Anyaoku who likened the national response to cancellation of the June 12 presidential poll to a similar situation in Canada in 1968 said that insisting on zoning today was like re-applying a therapy that was used to cure a national ailment that had been treated.

He said: “From a national and non-partisan view point, I must warn that the ongoing zoning debate within the PDP is a negation of Nigerian nationhood. To all observers, it was clear that the zoning that occurred in 1998/99 was a direct response to the unique national crisis precipitated by the inexplicable annulment of the country’s hitherto most credible presidential election and the subsequent death of its acknowledged winner, MKO Abiola, in incarceration.

“The crisis had taken Nigeria to the precipice of national disintegration and the two main political parties at the time wisely responded by selecting their presidential candidates from the seriously aggrieved geographical zone of the country.

“This response was comparable to what happened in Canada in 1968 when in reaction to a similar threat to Canada’s continued existence as one polity by a secession movement in Quebec, the French speaking zone of the country, the out-going Prime Minister, Lester B Pearson, led the governing Liberal Party, to go over the heads of the established party leaders from the English-speaking zones to choose a young French_speaking politician, Pierre Trudeau, as the new Prime Minister in order to save the integrity of Canada.

“Nigeria, like Canada, should by now have consigned both that unique and hopefully unrepeatable national crisis of 1993-98 to history.

To advocate zoning today, 50 years after our independence, is, therefore, like reintroducing a therapy that was applied to a national ailment which all patriotic citizens would regard as having been successfully treated with the reaffirmation of Nigerian nationhood over a decade ago.”

Roll call at PDP NEC Meeting

President Goodluck Jonathan
Vice President Mohammed Namadi Sambo
Senate President David Mark
Speaker Dimeji Bankole
Dr. Alex Ekwueme
Alhaji Ibrahim Mantu
Chief Barnabas Gemade
Dr. Ahmadu Ali,
Prince Vincent Eze Ogbulafor
Dr. Samuel Ogbemudia
Chief Tony Anenih.
Chief Ebenezer Babatope
Professor Jerry Gana
Adamu Hassan,
Senator Walid Jibrin,
Senator Stella Omu,
MajGen Mohammadu Magoro (Rtd),
Sen. Abubakar Sodangi
Shuaibu Oyedokun,
Nana Aisha Kadiri
Yekini Adeojo
Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu,
Kassim Ibrahim Imam
Gov Emmanuel Uduaghan
Gov  Babangida Aliyu,
GovChristopher Alao-Akala,
Gov Isa Yuguda
Gov Godswill Akpabio,
Gov Rotimi  Amaechi,
Gov Liyel Imoke,
Gov Sullivan Chime.
Gov Bukola Saraki
Gov Saidu Dakingari
Gov Ibrahim Shema
Gov Danjuma Goje
Gov Segun Oni,
Gov Timipre Sylva,
Gov Olagunsoye Oyinlola,
Gov Aliyu Shinkafi,
Gov Gbenga Daniel,
Gov Martin Elechi.
Gov  Sule Lamido,
Gov Akwe Doma,
Gov Murtala Nyako,
Dep Gov Ramallan Yero
Dep Gov Paullen Tallen
Hajia Hauwa Kida
Mrs Christy Silas,
Hajia Rabi Murktar Mohammed
Senator Nicholas Ugbane,
Senator Osita Izunaso,
Senator Lee Maeba,
Garba Matazu,
Farouk Lawal,
Ataii Idoko

About Post Author

Anthony-Claret Ifeanyi Onwutalobi

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
Happy
0 0 %
Sad
0 0 %
Excited
0 0 %
Sleepy
0 0 %
Angry
0 0 %
Surprise
0 0 %

Nigeria PDP throws open 2011 presidential ticket

0 0
Read Time:11 Minute, 28 Second

The contentious zoning threatening the fragile peace in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was settled yesterday with the party retaining the arrangement, but with an addendum that its presidential ticket is open to all interested aspirants.

National Chairman Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo had given an indication of how the controversial issue would be resolved at the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC) in his opening speech before the attendees went into a closed-door session.

Nwodo told the party faithful at Wadata Plaza, venue of the NEC meeting in Abuja that the PDP had not jettisoned the zoning arrangement for party and elective offices. Daily Sun also learnt that the PDP governors had also at their meeting on Wednesday night as well as at the expanded caucus meeting later at the Presidential Villa, canvassed the retention of zoning, while also allowing any willing aspirant to seek party’s presidential ticket.
The NEC ended at about 6.pm yesterday without a communiqué from the party’s National Working Committee (NWC).

It’s settled!
PDP throws open 2011 presidential ticket
NEC suspends e-registration, admits Abia Governor
•It’s victory for Jonathan, says Lar
…No, it’s a big defeat –Yakassa

But a Daily Sun source revealed that the party resolved to sustain the existing zoning arrangement, even as it resolved to throw open the party’s presidential ticket to interested aspirants. The source further revealed that the Katsina State Governor, Ibrahim Shema moved the motion to sustain zoning, while the former chairman of the PDP Board of Trustees, (BoT), Chief Tony Anenih seconded it.
The party, however, advised the PDP NWC to stay action on the orchestrated e-registration scheme for party members. The PDP governors spoke in unison against it at the well-attended meeting.

The NEC also resolved to re-admit the Abia State Governor, Theodore Orji into the party. The Abia governor had on Wednesday paid a visit to the party national secretariat to formally declare his intention to return to the PDP.
Incidentally, most of the positions taken at yesterday’s NEC meeting seemed to tally with what was agreed upon at the late night meeting of the expanded caucus meeting of Wednesday as well as another meeting of PDP governors, which held at the Kwara Lodge, Abuja.

At that meeting which began at about 5.00 p.m. the governors agreed to harmonise their position on zoning before proceeding for the expanded caucus meeting at the Presidential Villa. The governors’ positions are: 1. Zoning should be retained, because it’s in the party constitution and the constitution of Nigeria through federal character provision. 2 It’s the constitutional right of President Goodluck Jonathan to contest and he shouldn’t be denied that opportunity going by the circumstance he emerged as the president.

3 The party should allow any member of the party to contest and also provide a level playing field for all contestants in principles of equity, fairness and justice. The national caucus was expanded to accommodate the governors to make whatever agreed upon to sail through at the NEC. All the positions of the governors were adopted by the expanded caucus and literally all of them sailed through at the NEC meeting. To ensure that nothing went amiss, the governors met again before going for yesterday’s NEC meeting.

Speaking earlier at the opening of the NEC meeting, the PDP Chairman, Dr Nwodo said: “The PDP as a responsible organization is responsive to the spirit and letters of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria which enjoins the practice of federal character in the distribution of public offices.
“The misconception and accusations that PDP has abandoned zoning is very far from the truth. When our president emerged, he chose a northern Muslim as his vice president. When the chairman resigned, he was replaced by another chairman from the South-eastern zone. Our Senate President, Speaker, Deputy Senate President and Deputy Speaker are from different zones of the country.

“At the state level, we encourage rotation of our governors among the three senatorial zones in our state. How then can PDP be said to have abandoned zoning or rotation?” But Nwodo declared that even when zoning existed in the party constitution, there had never been hindrance to the aspiration of individual members within the party who showed interests in the presidential ticket, since the inception of the party in 1999. But he acknowledged that the speculated presidential ambition of President Jonathan was a test case for the party’s constitution and could be likened to the dilemma the nation faced when the late president Umaru Yar‘Adua was ill and his office was vacant.  

“In the 2011 presidential primary, we were faced with unforeseen circumstances, which can only be likened to a national crisis we faced recently when our late president Umaru Musa Yar‘Adua was ill and couldn’t transfer power to the then vice president, Dr Goodluck Jonathan. “The country rose to the occasion and parliament successfully transmitted power to the vice president as acting president. “In the zoning arrangement, we didn’t envisage that a serving president would die in office, unfortunately we lost our dear president.

“Today, Dr Goodluck Jonathan by the dictate of our constitution is exercising the term of a joint mandate, given by the people of our great country. If our late president were alive today, we wouldn’t be contesting his right to run for a second term under our national constitution. It was his entitlement.
“But Dr Jonathan who is part and parcel of that mandate has a right to contest the remaining of that joint ticket in 2011. This will of course, not exclude any other aspirant from any part of the country from contesting the presidential primary, as it has become the custom of our party.

“You will all recall that this scenario played out in the past in Adamawa State in the case of his Excellency, Atiku Abubakar and His Excellency Boni Haruna. This was when Atiku Abubakar was nominated as the running mate to President Obasanjo. Boni Haruna, in spite of the court challenge to deny him that mandate was adjudged by the courts as the right beneficiary of that ticket and he went on to do two terms as governor of Adamawa State.
Nwodo also told the PDP NEC members that a special convention to amend the party’s constitution would soon be convened to take care of emerging development, in line with the dictate of the Electoral Act.

In his remarks before the gathering entered into a closed-door session, President Jonathan appealed to the PDP members to work for the progress of the party and admitted that party faithful were bound to hold dissenting views on issues, but must be amicably resolved in the overall interest of the party.   He observed non-PDP members had showed more than passing interest in the contentious issue on zoning, in the party, an indication that they had conceded the 2011 presidency to the PDP.       

“At our NEC, we don’t stay here and box ourselves and we must maintain that tradition, because that is one of the good things we must bequeath to the next generation and we will disappoint Nigerians if we box ourselves and burn down our houses.
“We will work together as a party, because what happens in the PDP happens in the whole country. Just look at the issue of zoning or no zoning, it is PDP primaries, whether we zone or don’t zone, it is our own internal affairs. But the debate is even being spearheaded more by non-PDP members. That shows that what happens in PDP, in fact, they already conceded the presidency to us. Otherwise, they have no business coming to join our own debate. That means that already they know that the PDP will produce the president of this country, but do it well.”

Meanwhile, former Plateau State governor and foundation chairman of the party, Chief Solomon Lar, yesterday expressed delight over the decision taken by the NEC to allow President Jonathan to contest the 2011 presidential election. Lar told journalists that the position taken on zoning was in the best interest of the country.
“The party has been able to resolve the matter in the interest of the country.
I am happy that the party has said President Jonathan can continue with the joint ticket he enjoyed with the late  President Yar‘Adua. That’s the position of the party,” the former national chairman of PDP submitted.
But elder statesman, Alhaji Tanko Yakasai in his reaction last night said the outcome of the PDP NEC meeting was a total defeat for President Jonathan and his aides given that “technically speaking, it means that Jonathan is disqualified to contest the 2011 elections on the platform of the PDP.”

Yakasai explained that the two core items, which the president expected to happen in his favour, did not materialize at the end of the day, noting that the NEC did not eventually anoint him as the PDP’s presidential candidate for the 2011 elections, just as he failed to get the party to register its members by e-registration.
Yakasai, who admitted that he was yet to be fully briefed on the decisions reached by the NEC, explained that he was also not unaware of the structure of the party’s decision, which sounded rather ambiguous.
In his words: “I am happy that the NEC retained zoning in the party. But if they say that Jonathan can contest the elections in their party, then something is still wrong with their decision. My feeling is that they lacked the courage to come out and tell Jonathan that he cannot contest… because they cannot retain zoning and still say that anybody, including President Jonathan, can contest.”

He expressed joy over the cloud that is gathering in favour of zoning the presidency to the North, but expressed bitterness over the attitude of Jonathan and his supporters. Hear him: “What is worrying me is that Jonathan and his supporters are now holding us hostage. This is because we are being asked to give him our votes as ransom money. It is wrong for Jonathan to encourage the division of this country because of his political ambition.”
He concluded that, “My fear is that the way the whole drama (on zoning) is going, it is going to eventually end up creating a dichotomy between Christians and Muslims in Nigeria and that would be most unfortunate. All over the world, the president is seen as an agent of unity, but more and more, the way things are being played out, Jonathan and his supporters are becoming the agents of disunity in the land.”

Suleiman Argungu, former deputy governor of Kebbi State and a chieftain of All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) in another reaction last night said the decision was PDP’s pecular of playing with people’s intelligence.
“Ordinarily, the party should have come clearly to state where it stands instead of the usual abracadabra. It is also an indication that the party is not willing to follow due process and rule of law, because the constitution of any party or organisation is supposed to be sacrosanct and any deviation from the constitution is supposed to be met with severe sanction.
“Although I am not a member of the ruling party but I want to advise Jonathan to abide strictly by his party’s constitution and not to allow PDP to mess him up,” Argungu stressed.

Roll call at the PDP NEC meeting 
President Goodluck Jonathan, Vice President Namadi Sambo, PDP Chairman, Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo and other members of the NWC,  former national chairmen, Ahmadu Ali,  Prince Vincent Ogbulafor, Barnabas Gemade, Chief Solomon Lar.
Speaker Dimeji Bankole, Deputy Speaker Bayero Nafada, President of the Senate, David Mark, Deputy President of Senate, Ike Ekweremadu.

Former Board of Trustees Chairman, Chief Tony Anenih, Deputy Governor Kaduna, Alhaji Ramalan Yero, former Deputy President of the Senate, Alhaji Ibrahim Mantu, Governor Oyo, Adebayo Alao-Akala, Sokoto Governor, Aliyu Wamakko,  Ebonyi Governor, Martins Elechi, Second Republic Vice President, Dr. Alex Ekwueme, Governor of Akwa Ibom, Godswill Akpabio, Governor of Niger, Dr. Babangida Aliyu, Governor of Enugu, Sullivan Chime, Governor of Jigawa, Sule Lamido, Governor of Bayelsa, Timipre Silva, Governor of Adamawa, Murtala Nyako, Governor of Katsina, Ibrahim Shema, Governor of Imo, Chief Ikedi Ohakim, Governor of Ogun, Gbenga Daniel, Governor of Rivers, Rotimi Amaechi, Governor of Nasarawa, Akwe Doma, Deputy Governor of Plateau,  Paulin Talen, Governor of Osun, Olagunsoye Oyinlola, Governor of Ekiti, Olusegun Oni, Governor of Delta, Emmanuel Uduaghan, Governor of Bauchi, Isa Yuguda, Governor of Gombe, Danjuma Goje, Governor of Kwara, Bukola Saraki, Governor of Cross River, Lyel Imoke, Governor of Benue, Gabriel Suswan, Governor of Kebbi, Saidu Dakingari, Governor of Zamfara, Aliu Shinkafi.
Senators Annie Okonkwo, Lee Maeba, Osita Isunazo, Nicholas Yahaya Ugbane.

Samuel Ogbemudia, Chief Ebenezer Babatope, Professor Jerry Gana, Adamu Hassan, Senator Walid Jibrin, Senator Stella Omu,  Major-General Mohammadu Magoro (retd),  Senator Abubakar Sodangi, Shuaibu Oyedokun,  Nana Aisha Kadiri,  Yekini Adeojo, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, Kassim Ibrahim Imam,  Hajia Hauwa Kida, Mrs Christy Silas,  Hajia Rabi Murktar Mohammed,  Garba Matazu,  Farouk Lawal, Ataii Idoko.

About Post Author

Anthony-Claret Ifeanyi Onwutalobi

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
Happy
0 0 %
Sad
0 0 %
Excited
0 0 %
Sleepy
0 0 %
Angry
0 0 %
Surprise
0 0 %

Another Proposed cake walk by Israel – It will lead to United States demise

0 0
Read Time:6 Minute, 13 Second
Everyone who is concerned that yet another war in the Middle East could wreck what remains of the United States economy and probably strip away even more of our liberties should be troubled by the numerous calls for war against Iran.  No one believes that Iran is anything but a nation that is one small step away from becoming a complete religious dictatorship, but the country has a small economy, a tiny defense budget, and, as far as the world’s intelligence services can determine, neither nuclear weapons nor a program to develop them.  Labeling the Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as a new Hitler and describing the regime as “Islamofascist” is convenient but hardly conveys the reality of the complex political interaction taking place inside today’s Iran.  Ironically, the animus directed against Tehran relates not so much to what it is doing as to what its government might do, hardly an adequate pretext for going to war and a standard of behavior that many countries in the world would fail.

A resolution (HR 1553) is making its way through Congress that that would endorse an Israeli attack on Iran, which would be going to war by proxy as the US would almost immediately be drawn into the conflict when Tehran retaliates.  The resolution provides explicit US backing for Israel to bomb Iran, stating that Congress supports Israel’s use of “all means necessary…including the use of military force.” The resolution is non-binding, but it is dazzling in its disregard for the possible negative consequences that would ensue for the hundreds of thousands of US military and diplomatic personnel currently serving in the Near East region.  Even the Pentagon opposes any Israeli action against Iran, knowing that it would mean instant retaliation against US forces in Iraq and also in Afghanistan.  The resolution has appeared, not coincidentally, at the same time as major articles by leading neoconservatives Reuel Marc Gerecht and Bill Kristol calling for military action.  Both Gerecht and Kristol insist that action by Israel or the US would be better than doing nothing and both downplay the ability of Iran to counter-attack effectively.  One might note that both Kristol and Gerecht have been dramatically wrong in the past, most notably in their analyses of developments in Iraq.

Kristol is a poseur, a foreign policy wannabe, framing policy around his own Straussian beliefs.  Gerecht, who actually does know quite a bit about Iran and its internal politics, is the more dangerous of the two as he is able to use his knowledge, which he sprinkles throughout the article, to appear credible.  But as is so often the case with the neoconservatives, the thinking is based on false assumptions, optimistic assessments, and leaps of the imagination about what might occur.  One might recall neocon predictions of a “cakewalk” in Iraq, a war that still embroils tens of thousands of US troops and that kills Americans nearly every day.

In his article entitled “Should Israel Bomb Iran? – Better Safe than Sorry” Gerecht begins with three paragraphs outlining what might happen if Iran is attacked, to include attacks on US troops, shock oil prices, terrorist attacks worldwide, tumult in the Muslim world, and a rush by Iran to develop a nuclear weapon to defend itself.  He concludes, however, that “These fears are mostly overblown.”

Why Gerecht thinks that Iranian retaliation would be minimal is not completely clear, but he spends the next seven pages explaining why an attack on Iran might be a positive step.  He opines that bombing Iran “remains the only conceivable means of derailing or seriously delaying Iran’s nuclear program…” Bombing would also result in “traumatizing Tehran.”  And he provides a second reason for staging an attack, his argument that “Iran has already embraced terrorism against Israel and the United States” and that its regime supports the “indiscriminate killing” of Jews.  He presumes that Iran is hell bent on acquiring a nuclear weapon and would use it against Israelis “who must live with the Middle East’s merciless power politics…” or give it to terrorist groups to accomplish the same end.  Gerecht recommends that Israel should attack Iran to “rock the system” to make the regime “lose face” and suffer a military defeat that could have fatal consequences for its survivability.  He returns to the theme, mentioning oddly that “American fear of Iranian capabilities in Iraq and Afghanistan has been exaggerated” and then excoriates “an ugly anti-Israeli reflex” on the part of many Europeans when Israel uses lethal force to defend itself.

Gerecht is doing two things.  First, he is ignoring any role that Israel might have had in creating its own predicament vis-à-vis Iran and its other neighbors.  Israel is, for him, always the victim and never the instigator meaning that whatever it does is always self-defense and justifiable.  Second, he assumes that Iran is manifestly evil and will always choose the most despicable option for its own behavior while he simultaneously only assumes the best motives and best possible outcome for any Israeli or American military action.  He ignores the fact that Iran has no nuclear weapons program and assumes that Tehran is willing to bear the enormous expense and risk to develop a nuclear device and use it on Israel or give it to a terrorist even though that would be national suicide.  He reflexively judges every group in the Middle East that is opposed to Israel as a terrorist and lumps them in as enemies of Washington as well as of Israel whether or not they have actually carried out attacks against the US.  If Iran reacts to being bombed, he notes that “It is entirely possible that Khamenei would use terrorism against the United States after an Israeli strike,” an asymmetrical response using available resources that many might consider self-defense against an attacker but which Gerecht chooses to dismiss as terrorism.  Gerecht dismisses any legitimate criticism of the actions of the state of Israel as anti-Semitic or “ugly.”

The reality is that an Israeli attack on Iran will trigger an all-out war in the region, which will quickly include the United States.  It might or might not eliminate Iran’s technical ability to build a nuclear weapon and it would almost certainly accelerate that process.  It would not bring down the Iranian regime and usher in reformers who would embrace Israel and the United States while singing “Kumbaya” around the campfire.  It would be extremely nasty, would not solve any problems in the Middle East, and would kill tens of thousands of innocent people, if not more.  It could easily lead to the use of nuclear weapons by either the United States or Israel.  For the neoconservatives, it is easy to dismiss the possible downside while emphasizing the upside that they perceive, which is protecting Israel by damaging Iran’s nuclear program and possibly bringing about some version of regime change.  But we have seen too many times in the past how the neoconservatives can be wrong – think only of the “cakewalk” that has been Iraq now seven years on and still running.  A new war in the Middle East would be an unmitigated disaster for Iran, the United States, and even for Israel.  It must be avoided at all costs

About Post Author

Anthony-Claret Ifeanyi Onwutalobi

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
Happy
0 0 %
Sad
0 0 %
Excited
0 0 %
Sleepy
0 0 %
Angry
0 0 %
Surprise
0 0 %