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The declaration of June 12 as Democracy Day by President Muhammadu Buhari should be taken with a pinch of salt, according to the pan-Yoruba socio-political group Afenifere.

Buhari had on Wednesday moved the date for the event from May 29th to June 12 and also handed a posthumous award to the late Moshood Abiola.

Abiola was the acclaimed winner of the June 12, 1993 presidential election which was cancelled by then Military Head of State Sani Abacha.

However, in a statement, the Afenifere said, “We are not unaware that we are now in the election season and every attempt will be made to woo voters with issues that are popular.

“But be that as it may, we have canvassed for the honour of Chief Moshood Abiola since the annulment of June 12 and for June 12 to be declared democracy day for over two decades now. Therefore we accept the declarations and commend them.

“If we are able to hold free and fair elections, if we allow Nigerians to elect their leaders without hindrance, if the will of voters is acknowledged, if the ballot is allowed to reign supreme in the next Nigerian elections, then this would have celebrated our true belief in the spirit of June 12 and the proper honour of Abiola, who died on principle, insisting that the rights of Nigerians and their votes must be respected.

In addition, the body noted that, “fairness consist in giving even the devil his due. Like I said the true test of the motive and intention will come out in January, in fact right from Ekiti on July 14, we will know whether this is just a mere gimmick or a true spirit of democracy in the land. So it is not far for us to know the motive behind this.”

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No Defection, I Stand With Buhari — Amosun

Peter Okunoren

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Ogun State governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, has debunked the rumours making the rounds that he plans to defect from the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) to another party on account of the recent primaries in the state.

He described the news report in a segment of the media as a figment of the imagination of the writer(s).

In a press statement issued on Tuesday and signed by the state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Otunba Dayo Adeneye, Amosun wondered how he could be expected to quit a house he jointly built with other patriots.

“It is true that enormous pressure was brought to bear on Governor Amosun to move to another party because of the glaring injustice meted out to some party members at the recent primaries, but the governor maintained his stand that he would not decamp, especially on account of President Muhammadu Buhari, whose judgement and sense of justice, as the leader of the party, he cherishes and values immensely,” the statement said.

Adeneye further stated: “For those who know Amosun over the years, his struggles are usually not about his own person but equity, justice and fairness for all, especially the downtrodden masses. President Buhari represents this spirit and Amosun will stand by him and with him at all times.”

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BIG STORY

Osun Election: Adeleke Challenges Oyetola’s Victory, Asks Tribunal To Declare Him Governor

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The governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in Osun State, Senator Ademola Adeleke, has asked the Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Osogbo to declare him the winner of the governorship election in the state.

Senator Adeleke made the prayer on Tuesday when he filed a petition at the tribunal to challenge the victory of the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate and governor-elect, Mr Gboyega Oyetola.

He was represented at the tribunal by his running mate in the poll, Mr Albert Adeogun.

The 593-page petition was filed by one of the counsels to the PDP and its candidate, Mr Kanu Agabi.

The lawmaker and his party asked the tribunal led by Justice T.A. Igoche to nullify the victory of the governor-elect in the September 22 election.

They also asked the tribunal to declare the senator the winner of the poll because he polled the highest number of lawful votes cast and met other requirements of the law.

The PDP chairman in Osun, Mr Soji Adagunodo, and other party members were among those who stormed the tribunal in the state capital.

Mr Adagunodo told reporters that he was confident that his party would reclaim its mandate.

Senator Adeleke filed the petition at the tribunal barely three weeks after the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared Mr Oyetola as the winner of the Osun governorship election.

The APC candidate had trailed the senator by 353 votes before going into a supplementary election which held in seven polling units in the state on September 27.

However, his votes from the supplementary poll were enough to help him overturn the deficit and be returned as winner of the keenly contested election.

INEC consequently declared Oyetola the winner of the election.

The final votes announced by the electoral body showed that Oyetola got 255,505 votes, while Adeleke polled 255,023 votes.

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BIG STORY

Edo Speaker Raises Alarm Over Influx Of Sex Workers In Legislative Quarters

Peter Okunoren

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Speaker of Edo State House of Assembly, Honourable Kabiru Adjoto, (Rtd) on Monday raised the alarm over the influx of commercial sex workers around the Legislative Quarters, in Benin City, the State capital.

Adjoto raised the alarm during the ministerial briefing by the State Commissioner for Youth and Special Duties, Mika Amanokha, at the House of Assembly.

The Speaker noted that the teenage commercial sex workers hang around the legislative quarters and hotels around its environs between the hours of 9 pm till dawn.

According to Adjoto; “Between Royal Marble [Hotel] and the gates of the Legislative Quarters, you find youths between the ages of 17 and 18 going naked.” He explained and urged the Commissioner to put machinery in motion to check the ugly trend.

Responding, the Commissioner who said it was not the jurisdiction of his ministry to stop the commercial sex workers from the area, however, added that information available to him indicated that they are business people and that he has no right to stop them.

“Mr Speaker, that control does not fall in the purview of my ministry. Yes, they are youths; it appears that the people I see or the people am told that goes around there are business people. I do not have the right to stop them…I haven’t gone around there at night to see what’s going on.”

At that point, the Speaker, Adjoto, was forced to ask; “what kind of business are they transacting, youths going naked, between the ages of 17 and 18, you say they are in business?”

Amanokha responded: “Mr. Speaker, I take very strong note of that, I will drive around the area to see what’s going on there.”

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