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Bayelsa Poll Murder: Sylva Blasts Diri For Ordering His Prosecution

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A former Minister of State for Petroleum, Timipre Sylva, has lambasted the Bayelsa State Governor, Douye Diri, for ordering his prosecution over the death of George Sibo in the last governorship election.

Sylva was responding to a call by Governor Diri at the burial of the deceased in Twon-Brass on Thursday, directing the state Attorney-General to commence legal action against him (Sylva), and those who stormed the collation centre.

Diri alleged that the 31-year-old George Sibo was killed when Timipre Sylva, the candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in the November 11 governorship poll, led his party members and supporters to invade the collation centre and held INEC officials hostage.

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The governor expressed sadness over the dastardly killing of the young man and promised that the state government would bring the culprits to book.

READ ALSO: Fubara Sacks Rivers Traditional Council Chairman, Makes Replacement

Sylva, in a statement signed by his Special Assistant, Media, Julius Bokoru, said the directive, which Diri gave to his attorney-general, had shown the governor’s desperation to deploy diversionary tactics and distractions against his case at the Appeal Court.

The statement said: “Chief Sylva is curious at what Diri’s apparent desperation can push him to. It is clear this recent effort is a symptom of fear, shortly after Diri tried to conjure some phantom EFCC case against Sylva he devised a new method of distraction which, of course, is dead on arrival.

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“Sylva knows nothing of the murder of George Sibo, an illustrious and promising youth of the state, it is important to note that by the time the young man died, Sylva was well out of the Island.”

The statement alleged that Diri had continued to spend huge amounts of taxpayers’ money on heavy propaganda to distract Sylva’s focus on his case.

READ ALSO: Abure Worker Of Iniquity, LP Executive Secret Society – Kenneth Okonkwo Alleges

The statement further said: “It is clear that this is fear, anxiety and everything to distract Chief Sylva after his attempt to bring up EFCC issues failed in the wake of a long and relentless string of propaganda against Chief Sylva with taxpayers monies.

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“It is clear that any attempt to drag Chief Sylva into this issue is either inspired by fear and anxiety or by a thoroughly jaundiced mindset.

“Everything imaginable has been put in Sylva’s way to distract him. After Diri’s attempt to bring up phantom EFCC issues failed. After the endless and relentless string of propaganda failed against Chief Sylva. Now this.”

The statement also stated: “Chief Sylva, concerned Bayelsans and the APC are trying everything within the law to get a stolen mandate back. Until justice is done, Diri’s Governorship remains illegitimate in the minds of every sincere Bayelsan and every sincere person of goodwill.”

 

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Edo Guber: PDP Reacts To Court Judgement Affirming Ighodalo’s Candidacy

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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has hailed Wednesday’s judgement of the Federal High Court, Abuja, which affirmed the nomination of its candidate, Dr. Asue Ighodalo in the September 21, 2024 Governorship election in Edo State.

National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Hon. Debo Ologunagba said this in a statement, in Abuja.

According to him, the Party described the landmark judgement which upheld the PDP Edo State Governorship Primary election held on February 22, 2024, at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin City, as victory for democracy, Rule of Law and a well-founded affirmation of the propriety and credibility of the Primary election and PDP’s internal democracy.

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READ ALSO: BREAKING: Court Reinstates Shaibu As Edo Deputy Governor

He said, “The spontaneous jubilation across Edo State at the news of the judgement reaffirms the PDP’s candidate, Dr. Asue Ighodalo as the undisputed preference of the majority of the people of Edo State in the coming Governorship election.

“The Party notes that the judgement further validates the fact that all the aspirants at the Governorship Primary election were accorded level playing ground in the conduct of the Edo State PDP Congresses and Governorship Primary election that produced Dr. Asue Ighodalo as candidate.

“The PDP congratulates Dr. Asue Ighodalo and urges all Party members to remain united and continue to work together with the majority of the people of Edo State to ensure the victory of our Party and candidate in the September 21, 2024 Governorship election.”

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Ex-Rep Rejects Membership Of Edo APC Gov Campaign Council

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A former Deputy Chief Whip of the House of Representatives, Pally Iriase, has declined his membership of the National Campaign Council of the All Progressives Congress for the Edo State governorship election.

Iriase, whose name was included in the list released on Friday, said he was not consulted before he was included in the team and that he has since stepped aside from politics.

In a statement on Friday, Iriase wished the APC a successful campaign and a peaceful election and urged everyone to respect his desire to be excluded from the council.

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READ ALSO: Esan-born Lady Seeks Okpebholo’s Support To Replace Amputated Limb

The statement reads, “My attention has been drawn to the fact that my name is included in the list of appointees into the National Campaign Council for the governorship election in Edo State by the All Progressives Congress.

“I appreciate the National Working Committee for finding me worthy of the appointment. But, I hereby reject the appointment for the following reasons:

“I was never consulted. I have for several years stepped away from partisan politics, and I do not intend to change my mind.

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“I do not want my associates, friends, admirers, and family to see me as a hypocrite.

“While wishing APC a successful campaign and a peaceful election, I strongly urge everyone to respect my desire to be excluded from partisan politics.”

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FULL LIST: 20 States With Local Government Caretaker Committees

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Photo credit: Nation

Most states have resorted to governing the local governments through caretaker committees set up by the State Government.

This is contrary to Section 7 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), which guarantees the system of local government by democratically elected officials.

Caretaker committees have become a prevalent practice in different states across the federation, and are fast replacing local government councils.

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Factors fingered for the inability of many States to conduct council polls include insecurity, paucity of funds as well as political and legal battles.

Thursday’s ruling by the Supreme Court declaring that it is unconstitutional for Governors to hold funds allocated for local government administrations further raised the question of how LG helmsmen are routinely sacked from office and replaced with Caretaker Committees.

These are the states running local governments with caretaker committees as complied by The Nation:

READ ALSO: BREAKING States Lose As Supreme Court Rules On LG Financial Autonomy

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1. Rivers – Rivers Governor Siminalayi Fubara appointed caretaker committees for the 23 local government areas as he continues his battle with his predecessor, Nyesom Wike, for the control of the political structure in the oil-rich state.

2. Jigawa – On June 28, 2024, the government of Jigawa State dissolved the elected council chairmen of the 27 local governments.

3. Anambra – On June 20, 2024, Governor Charles Soludo, through the House of Assembly, confirmed the appointment of transition committee chairmen and councillors for the 21 local government areas.

4. Zamfara – In Zamfara, the last grassroots poll was held on April 27, 2019, and the State returned to appointees after the chairmen’s tenures expired. In May 2024, the Assembly approved a six-month extension for the caretaker committee.

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5. In Benue, however, elections are scheduled to be held on July 6, 2024, for LG council chairmen.

6. Bauchi – Last year, Bauchi State Governor, Senator Bala Mohammed, sworn in 20 appointed local government area caretaker committee chairmen with their deputies.

READ ALSO: BREAKING: Supreme Court Bars Govs From Sacking LG Chairmen

7. Plateau – June 2023, Governor Caleb Mutfwang of Plateau inaugurated the Interim Transition Committee chairpersons for its 17 local government areas at Government House Jos.

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8. Abia – In December 2023, Abia Governor Alex Otti, inaugurated the 17 local government transition council chairpersons.

9. Enugu – In March 2024, Enugu State Government ordered local government chairmen in the 17 councils to hand over administration to heads of personnel management after the expiration of their tenures.

10. Katsina

11. Kano – In March 2024, Gov. Abba Kabir Yusuf of Kano State recommended names of Interim Management Committee members for Local Government Areas of the state to its House of Assembly for screening and confirmation.

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12. Sokoto

13. Yobe – In April 2024, Yobe State Governor, Mai Mala Buni, approved the dissolution of all the 17 local government councils of the state, and also directed all local government chairmen to handover the affairs of their respective local governments to Directors of Personnel Management.

READ ALSO: JUST IN: Supreme Court Bars FG From Paying Allocations To LGs With Unelected Officials

14. Ondo – Ondo State Government also constituted Caretaker Committees for the 18 Local Councils and 33 Local Council Development Areas, (LCDA).

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15. Osun – In February 2024, Osun Assembly extended the tenure of office and re-appointed caretaker committees of 30 Local Government Areas and 39 others running Modakeke Area Office and Local Council Development Areas in the state.

The extension was subsequently secured for the caretaker chairmen, vice chairmen, scribes and their members’ fresh six months tenure, beginning in February and ending in August 2024.

16. Delta

17. Akwa-Ibom – Governor Umo Eno last year through a letter with reference number GHU/AKS/S/104/VOL.1/607, addressed to the Speaker, Hon. Udeme Otong, informed the House of Assembly that there was no provision in the 2023 budget for the conduct of local government elections.

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He urged the Assembly to pass a resolution authorising him to set up interim administration at the 31 local government areas at the expiration of the tenure of the elected council officials.

19. In Imo State, the last council poll was conducted on August 25, 2018, which was the first in seven years.

20. In Kwara State, the last council election was in November 2017 with caretaker committees in charge since 2020.

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