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A presidential aspirant of the Peoples Democratic Party, Donald Duke, on Tuesday said that his ambition was not supported by former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

Duke, a former governor of Cross River State who recently declared his intention to run for the exalted office, told newsmen in Lagos that though he remained close to Obasanjo, his decision to run was personal.

“I am not hypocritical. I am close to the former president, but he is neither my sponsor nor my backup. However, those who come up with this propaganda also go to get the ex-president’s endorsement.

“I will not keep people aside because of what others think. I need everybody’s support; but I am running as Duke and nobody’s stogie.

“I will be putting myself up to run. How it pans out is not what I can say” he said. On the zoning in the PDP, Duke said that it would not deter him from running as it remained his constitutional rights.

“Let the people decide. Zoning is undemocratic. I am running as a Nigerian. Zoning has never brought out the best in us. It brings compromise” he said.

He, however, said that his candidature and final platform would be determined on what unfolds in the party. “There are talks going on with other platforms. When these talks are concluded, then Nigeria will know my final stand. I remain a bona fide member of the PDP,” he said.

Duke said that there was need for every Nigeria to get involved in governance in one form or another saying:“Things don’t just happen. Folks make it happen.”

On Tinapa Holiday Resort in Cross River which was his pet project, Duke lamented that it was neglected by subsequent governments.

“Tinapa was completed. It would have been making trillions of Naira for the state if successive governments had continued with the project.

“With continuity it would have been moving. Tinapa is just a metaphor for poor governance and problem of continuity in governance.“We built Tinapa to drive development in Cross River. Continuing with such a project would have made the state less dependent of subvention,” he said.

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BREAKING: African Action Congress Suspends Omoyele Sowore, 8 Others Over Alleged Corruption, Abuse Of Office

Peter Okunoren

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The African Action Congress, AAC, Monday, declared that it had suspended its national chairman and 2019 presidential candidate, Omoyele Sowore, and nine others over alleged corruption and abuse of office.

Sowore’s suspension was conveyed in a communique read by Mazi Okwy, a member of the party’s National Executive Committee.

The decision of the party, according to the communique, signed by the acting National Chairman, Leonard Nzenwa and the Deputy National Secretary, Abayomi Francis Olufemi, was the resolution of the National Executive Committee of the AAC, at its 2nd National Executive Committee meeting, held 27th March, 2019, in Abuja.

The party, according to the communique, accused Mr Sowore, the publisher of SaharaReporters of “deliberate inability to convene or hold the constitutionally mandated quarterly meetings of the National Executive Committee and other organs of the party.”

Details Later….

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POLITICS

How To End Godfatherism In Lagos Politics —– El-Rufai Tells Lagosians

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The Governor of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, has advised Lagosians on how to end godfatherism in the State’s politics.

El-Rufai gave the advice on Saturday while responding to questions after delivering a lecture in Lagos at an event organised by the Bridge Club, tagged: “An evening with His Excellency Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, Governor of Kaduna State.”

The Governor said he defeated and retired four political godfathers in Kaduna State, adding that the feat could be replicated anywhere, including Lagos State.

Asked by a former National Legal Adviser of the All Progressives Congress and now Chairman of the Board of the Assets Management Company of Nigeria, Dr. Muiz Banire (SAN), how to tackle godfatherism, which he described as one of the drawbacks for professionals and businessmen who might want to go into politics, El-Rufai said: “Godfatherism.

“This is Lagos.

“Let me tell you something sir: you know, Kaduna State used to be like that.

“There were three or four politicians in Kaduna that you could not become anything unless you had them on your side.

“Those were the godfathers of Kaduna politics and you had to carry them along and you know, the three words, ‘carry them along’ mean paying them regularly.

“But we chose a different path and the long and short of it now is that after this election in 2019, we have retired all of them.

“We had to.

“Here in Lagos, you have over six million registered voters, only about a million voted (in 2019 general elections).

“Five million did not vote.

“If I want to run for governor of Lagos, I will start now.

“I will commission a study to know why those five million registered voters did not vote.

“Where do they go on election day?

“Then I will start visiting them for the next four years.

“I will try and get just two million of them to come and vote for me.

“I will defeat any godfather.

“The key is to go to the people.

“The card reader and the biometric register have given us the tools to connect directly with the people.

“I assure you if you do that for the next four years, connecting with the people, the tin godfather, you will retire him or her permanently.

“But it is hard work.

“It requires three to four years of hard work.

“So, if you want to run in 2023, you should start now.”

On funding, El-Rufai said it would require about N2 billion to achieve the feat.

He said: “With about N2 billion, if you start, you see these guys with black ties, they will give you the N2 billion.

“Many of the godfathers are either on paper or in the mind of people in politics.

“They are defeatable.

“We retired four of them in Kaduna State within a four-year time and they are gone.

“One of them boasted that he put me in the government house and he would take me out.”

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POLITICS

Oyetola Vs Adeleke: Tribunal Reserves Judgment In Osun Governorship Election Dispute

Peter Okunoren

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The Court of appeal sitting in Abuja has reserved judgment in the election petition filed by the governor of Osun challenging the verdict of the State’s election petition tribunal which nullified his election.

After taking arguments from parties in the appeals, Justice Jummai Sankey announced that judgement has been reserved and that the parties will be informed as soon as they are ready.

In three separate appeals filed by Governor Oyetola, the All Progressives Congress and the Independent National Electoral Commission, they asked the appellate court to set aside the march 22nd, 2019 judgement of the Osun State election petition tribunal which declared Senator Ademola Adeleke as winner of the Osun gubernatorial election.

Governor Oyetola’s lawyer, Wole Olanipekun pleaded with the five man panel of the Appeal Court Justices to void the judgement of the tribunal because it violated the electoral act 2010 and judicial precedence of the Supreme Court.

INEC in its own appeal argued by Yusuf Ali informed the Appeal Court that the findings of the tribunal were wrong because they were based on uncertified documents dumped on the tribunal by Senator Adeleke and the PDP.

Although counsel to Governor Oyetola declined commenting on the petition, lawyer to Senator Adeleke expressed optimism that the appellate court will uphold the verdict of the tribunal.

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