The national president of Northern Youth Leaders Forum (NLYF), Comrade Eliot Afiyo has disclosed that, no fewer than 67 members of the body lost their lives as a result of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) strike in Kaduna.
He noted that the strike was an evil machination contrived by the NLC to increase the hardship of ordinary residents of the state, adding that henceforth, his organization will scuttle such ungodly act.
Recall that the NLC embarked on a 5 day warning strike to protest the sacking of thousands of Kaduna State civil servants following a downsizing policy of the state government.
Afiyo who condemned the NLC’s action in strongest terms, noted that the labour union through its action is simply trying to cause a reign of anarchy.
He added that instead of staging protests against insecurity and other obnoxious policies of the Federal Government, the NLC was busy staging uncalled for protest against a state government for doing what is legally expedient.
“Kaduna State is presently engulfed with insecurity leading to killings, kidnapping and many more. The NLC led by Comrade Ayuba Wabba did not feel any concern that requires mass protest.
“The increase in pump price of petrol has become a recurring decimal and electricity tariff are being increased on quarterly basis yet Comrade Wabba did not think of any minor protest at least to draw the attention of the people, but organised a mass protest because Kaduna State Government wanted to downsize the workforce which constitute only 20% of the population of Kaduna State.
“Even the minimum wage that was approved for the workers is not paid by many state governors and NLC does not bother about it because NLC is yet to implement it for their workers,” he said.
While regretting the massive loss of lives and properties of Kaduna residents as a result of the strike, Afiyo warned Wabba never again contemplate such rash action, saying it will attract the wrath of his group.
“We want to state clearly without mincing words that NYLF would not allow any form of protest by NLC in Kaduna State or any other northern state including Abuja against any other policy except on insecurity. We want to sound a note of warning to Comrade Wabba and his colleagues to stay clear from Kaduna State not to talk of organizing a protest against the downsizing of the workforce.
“We observed with great dismay the last protest by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in Kaduna State during which essential services and workers were shut down and forcefully pushed out.
“Doctors and nurses were forced to leave their wards and theatre rooms, electricity cables and transformers were disconnected, water hawkers popularly known as Mai ruwa were threatened and intimidated, markets were closed and traders were chased out.
“All major roads were barricaded pharmacies, patent medical stores, chemists were forcefully closed. As a result, many lives were lost due to lack of medical attention. The NYLF lost sixty seven of her members due to this unconstitutional and selfish desire by NLC,” Afiyo disclosed.
2023: Keyamo Reveals Tinubu-Shettima Podcast Four Days To Campaign
The spokesperson for the Tinubu-Shettima Presidential Campaign Council, Festus Keyamo (SAN), has disclosed the first edition of his podcast – a recording of audio discussion – on the numerous achievements of the Presidential Candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Senator Ahmed Bola Tinubu.
Keyamo revealed this while sharing a clip of his first podcast on social media Saturday evening.
The Minister of State for Labour and Employment hinted that it would also be used as a tool to deflate misconceptions and set the tone for the presidential campaign, which begins September 28.
“I welcome you to the first edition of a weekly podcast I will bring to you as the chief image maker of this campaign, highlighting the issues, debunking the fallacies and setting the tone for this campaign on a weekly basis.”
He also said his candidate (Tinubu) was an easy one to sell, adding that his records were there for everyone to see.
Amid Wike Chaos, PDP Starts Atiku Campaign
Considers Abuja, Asaba Or Yola For Flag-off
Despite the crisis rocking the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, the party is going ahead with preparations for the commencement of its presidential campaign for the 2023 general elections, without the embattled Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike, and members of his team.
This is as the party’s presidential candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, assured that disagreement among members would be resolved very soon.
Wike and his supporters had, on Wednesday, pulled out of the Campaign Council of the party’s presidential candidate and vowed not to play any role until the National Chairman of the PDP, Senator Iyorchia Ayu, resigned.
However, Vanguard learnt that the PDP, which has fixed Wednesday, September 28, for the inauguration of the Campaign Council, is considering three states/ venues for the flag-off.
The presidential and National Assembly campaigns begin the same Wednesday, according to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) timetable, and will run through Thursday, February 23, 2023, while the elections proper hold Saturday, February 25, 2023.
A party insider familiar with the development said the PDP was putting finishing touches to drawing up the programme of events for the inauguration as well as logistics.
“For now, Abuja, where we will be inaugurating the Campaign Council, Uyo, Asaba and Yola are among the venues being considered. We are taking a lot of things into consideration.
“We have not settled for a venue because our candidate is still moving around meeting zonal caucuses to hear from each one of them directly”, the source revealed.
The National Publicity Secretary of the party, Debo Ologunagba, who is currently in Uyo with members of the National Working Committee and other party leaders, told Vanguard on the phone that the party was going ahead with its plans and programmes.
He said, “Our programmes are going ahead as planned, nothing has changed. The date for the inauguration of our campaign council is already known, we will make the venue and time for the flag-off public when we are ready.”
The PDP has been enmeshed in internal rumblings since after its presidential primary election in May which Atiku, a former vice president, won.
The decision of Wike, who finished second in the primary, and his supporters not to be part of the presidential campaign has further widened the cracks in the party.
While the PDP standard bearer is doing everything to unite the party for the forthcoming elections, the state chapters have remained divided.
It is understood that in Cross Rivers State, while a former governor and member of the reconciliation committee, Mr Liyel Imoke, is in the camp of Atiku, another former governor, Mr Donald Duke, is in Wike’s camp.
Findings also showed that in Lagos State, while a former Deputy National Chairman, Chief Olabode George, is in bed with Wike who, he said, was fighting for justice and equity in the PDP, the party’s governorship candidate in the 2023 elections, Olajide ‘Jandor’ Adediran, is with Atiku.
And whereas the governor-elect in Osun State, Senator Ademola Adeleke, is with the Atiku group, a governorship aspirant in the last election, Dotun Babayemi, has joined the Wike group.
In Ekiti, those in the Atiku camp include former deputy governors Kolapo Olusola Eleka, Dr Sikiru Lawal, and Senator Abiodun Olujimi. Others are the factional state chairman, Deji Ogunsakin, a former PDP chairman, Gboyega Oguntuase, PDP State Publicity Secretary, Raphael Adeyanju, state Woman Leader, Sade Akinrinmade, former Deputy Speaker, Segun Adewumi and former House of Assembly member, Hon. Samuel Omotosho.
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Those in Wike’s camp include former Gov. Ayodele Fayose, Mr. Lere Olayinka, all party candidates except Senator Olujimi, former acting Gov. Tunji Odeyemi and the Secretary, Elders Council, Mr. Idowu Odeyemi.
In Ondo State, while the two-term governor, Olusegun Mimiko, is with Wike, his political son and former governorship candidate of the PDP in the state, Eyitayo Jegede, is a staunch ally of Atiku.
Also, a former deputy governor, Hon Agboola Ajayi, who was in the same camp with Mimiko during the last governorship election in Ondo, is not on the same page with him this time around. Ajayi is with Atiku even as he’s contesting for the Senate seat in Ondo South.
Many leaders of the party in the state are not at home with the support Jegede is giving to Atiku and the make-belief that the party in the state is lining up behind Atiku.
Those who spoke with Sunday Vanguard in confidence recalled how Wike and Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State bankrolled Jegede’s governorship election in 2020 and also supported the PDP while Atiku ignored the party during its trying times after Jegede lost the election to Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Sunday Vanguard’s findings further revealed that in Edo State, while Governor Godwin Obaseki is undecided, the South-South zonal Chairman of the party, Chief Dan Orbih, is on the side of Wike.
Sources said the Atiku camp and that of the National Chairman of the PDP, Senator Iyorchia Ayu, desperate to win over Orbih from Wike by recognizing his faction against that of Obaseki, has yielded no fruit.
In Ogun State, the party’s governorship candidate, Hon. Ladi Adebutu, his running mate, Abdulkabir Akinlade, and the Sikirulahi Ogundele-led executive are with Atiku while others queue behind Wike.
Whereas in Oyo, Governor Seyi Makinde is one of the arrowheads of Ayu must go and vicariously with Wike, many party leaders in the state are rooting for Atiku.
Disagreement will be resolved soon – Atiku
Meanwhile, Atiku has described it as family issues, challenges bedevilling the party and assured that they would soon be resolved.
He gave the assurance on Friday in Uyo, Akwa Ibom, during the 35th-anniversary celebration of the creation of the state.
Represented by the Chairman of Nigeria Governors’ Forum, NGF, and Governor of Sokoto State, Alh. Aminu Tambuwal, Atiku appealed to the people to support the PDP to return to power at the centre and also to remain in power in the state.
READ ALSO: wikeAyu: I Will Fight To Finish, Wike Insists
His words: “I urge Akwa Ibom people to continue their support for the governor to finish strong. I believe also that with your support, Pastor Umo Eno, will emerge as your next governor. We believe that there should be continuity of PDP in Akwa Ibom while our party will return to power in 2023.
“Yes, we must acknowledge that we are having internal family issues, but be rest assured that we are not involved or engaged in the war of attrition.
“It is a political disagreement and very soon, all of that will be resolved and the PDP will remain stronger, until we win the election, by the grace of God, come February 2023.”
Why I’m Silent Over PDP Crisis – Saraki
Former Senate President Bukola Saraki has spoken after a long time, giving reasons why he has been silent over the series of crises rocking the Peoples Democratic Party.
Saraki, who just returned from an annual vacation, went straight to Akwa Ibom State to join the celebration of the 35th anniversary of the state’s creation.
Saraki said he had been working silently, adding that there were times when it was necessary to do this.
The PUNCH reports that the PDP, of which Saraki is a member, has been battling leadership crisis, particularly the aggressive calls for the resignation of its National Chairman, Iyorchia Ayu, specifically led by governors Nyesom Wike and Seyi Makinde of Rivers State and Oyo State respectively.
Wike’s camp had recently pulled out of the campaign council of the PDP’s presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar.
Atiku, who seemed to be boxed in a corner, being a notable figure in the party, had not taken side on the call for the resignation of Ayu.
Rather, Atiku maintained that the party’s constitution must be followed. Atiku also recently said that Ayu could not be forced to resign. This is as Wike continues to drag the party even by holding media parleys, alleging bribery and raising several allegations.
Aggrieved members of the PDP had hinged their calls for the resignation of Ayu on regional reasons, saying they wanted the South to a hold a position in the party’s leadership.
Reacting via Facebook post on his verified page, Saturday, Saraki said, “I just returned from my annual vacation and went straight to Akwa Ibom to join the celebration of the 35th anniversary of the state’s creation.
“As I moved around the country in the past few days, I got the feeling that many people are concerned over my seeming silence on recent developments in our party, the PDP. My response is that there are times to speak and be heard and there are times when working silently behind the scene is more productive. This is such a time.”
Throwing weight behind Atiku, Saraki said, “The PDP and Atiku Abubakar remain the best option for Nigerians in the 2023 polls!”
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