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The Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, Prof. Itse Sagay (SAN), on Thursday in Abuja rejected calls for the sack of the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun.

Sagay spoke against the backdrop of the calls for President Muhammadu Buhari to sack Adeosun over the allegation that she skipped the National Youth Service Corps programme and forged an exemption certificate.

Sagay spoke in Abuja during the workshop on the United Kingdom Unexplained Wealth Order, organised by PACAC, UK National Crime Agency and the Department for International Development.

Asked what he thought about the government’s refusal to react to the issue, Sagay said: “I don’t know why the government has not reacted.

“But, let me tell you my reaction: this woman is a brilliant and extremely valuable member of this government.

“A lot of the good things happening now – the welfare that Nigerians are enjoying and are going to enjoy, because it takes time, and the way our economy is booming, how we got out of recession – are due to her expertise, her commitment, her sacrifice.

“There is nothing in this world that will make me remove such a woman from the government.

“The PDP (Peoples Democratic Party) can weep from now until there is no tear in their body.

“She is going to be there.

“We cannot afford to lose that woman.”

Asked if it was not an offence to skip NYSC, Sagay said: “Who cares about youth service?

“I don’t bloody care whether she did youth service or not.

“It’s irrelevant as far as I am concerned.”

On the allegation that she forged an exemption certificate, the PACAC chairman said: “I don’t believe it.

“I don’t see anything serious about not doing youth service.

“I don’t see anything serious about it.

“That’s my own bias, not government’s.

“I’m telling you now. If you ask me, if I were President Buhari, I would never, ever touch that woman because she’s damn good.

“The enemies of this government want to reduce his capacity to provide good governance by engaging in social media attacks and trying to get rid of her.

“It will not work.”

In a related development, Sagay faulted the freezing of Benue State’s account by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, describing it as “extreme”.

He said while EFCC could investigate governors, they cannot be prosecuted since they have immunity.

He said: “There’s nothing EFCC can do to him (Governor Samuel Ortom).

“They can’t arrest him.

“They can investigate him, put down the records of what they found and wait for his tenure to end.

“Right now, nobody can touch him.

“As for freezing Benue State’s account, I can’t support it.

“I don’t know why, but the government has to function.

“I don’t want people to suffer because there are no funds for basic government functions.

“I don’t know if EFCC really did that.

“We have to be careful because it looks extreme to me.”

BIG STORY

Mad Man Stabs Monarch To Death In Ekiti

Peter Okunoren

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Odo-Oro-Ekiti, a community in Ikole Local Government Area of Ekiti State, was on Monday thrown into mourning as its traditional ruler, Oba Gbadebo Ogunsakin, was stabbed to death.

Some residents, who spoke with the News Agency of Nigeria, said the traditional ruler was stabbed with a knife by a man suspected to be insane after a meeting of the traditional council.

A resident, Mr Henry Olu, said the assailant was from the same royal family as the slain traditional ruler.

Olu said the assailant was earlier seen before the council meeting sitting on the throne and was chased away.

The monarch was stabbed by the assailant while he was attempting to enter his vehicle after the council meeting.

“All we heard was a cry for help from the traditional ruler’s driver shortly after the council meeting.

“On getting there, we saw our traditional ruler in a pool of his blood with a knife in the chest.

“We tried rushing him to the hospital, but Oba Ogunsakin gave up the ghost,” another resident, who does not want his name mentioned, said.

NAN reports that some irate youths in the community took to the streets in search of the assailant who was said to have fled into the bush after the incident.

The youths mounted roadblocks on major junctions leading into the community while the search lasted.

NAN also reports that there was panic in the community, with its market deserted as the news of the incident filtered.

The Police Public Relations Officer in Ekiti, DSP Caleb Ikechukwu, confirmed the incident in a telephone interview with NAN.

“It is true the incident actually happened and policemen have moved in.

“The person alleged is of unsound mind and he actually escaped into the bush after committing the crime.

“Our men are combing the bush to fish out the suspect.

“All I can say for now is that the suspect is within reach and will be put in custody,” he said.

NAN reports that the late Ogunsakin ascended the throne in 1986.

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BIG STORY

‘I Challenge You To A Public Debate, Lets Present The Facts To Nigerians’ —- Gov Udom Dares Akpabio

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Akwa Ibom State Governor, Udom Emmanuel, on Monday dared his predecessor Senator Godswill Akpabio to a debate ahead of the 2019 election.

Emmanuel’s challenge was an apparent reply to Akpabio’s comments at Ikot Ekpene on Sunday.

The former governor had stated that “Udom (Emmanuel) is a mistake that must be corrected in 2019.

“All hands must be on deck to ensure that the mistake is corrected for a people-oriented leadership under the ruling All Progressives Congress at the centre,” he had said.

Responding, the governor at a rally in his honour at Onna Sports Stadium, said he was ready to present the facts of his administration to the world and that anyone who can confront him should come forward.

He said: “I have heard things, and I want to challenge any who thinks he has the truth to come out, I will use my personal money to hire the media.

“Let’s present facts to Nigerians, let’s see who would tell the truth and who will also tell a lie”.

“However, the issue on ground is Akwa Ibom, it’s about the development of this state, it’s about our children in public schools who are excelling in international competitions, it’s about the price of garri that we have drastically dropped, it’s about the unity of this state which we believe in”.

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BIG STORY

Tambuwal Blasts Tinubu, Reveals What APC National Leader Did When He Was Stopped From Running With Buhari In 2015

Peter Okunoren

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The Governor of Sokoto State, Aminu Tambuwal, has said that he has what it takes to defeat President Muhammadu Buhari in any political platform.

The Governor said that if he wanted to remain in the APC and battle the party’s ticket with Buhari, he would have done so and win the presidency.

The Governor made this known in his reaction to the statement by the APC National Leader, Ahmed Tinubu, about his exit from the ruling party.

According to a statement on the State’s Twitter handle, @sokotogovthouse, Tambuwal said that Tinubu tried to rock the boat when he was denied as Buhari’s Vice President, adding that the former Lagos Governor thinks everyone was like him.

“If I wanted to and if the Presidency is what (why) Ahmed Tinubu thinks I defected, I could contest with President Buhari under the APC. I have what it takes to have contested with Mr. President.”

“Tinubu tried to rock the boat when he was denied Buhari’s vice presidency. He thinks every other person could behave his way. If I wanted to contest under the APC as president, I could have done so and only the votes could have produced a winner.”

He added that Tinubu’s statement could serve as a confirmation that there was no internal democracy in the ruling party.

He added, “In any case, Tinubu is confessing that there is no level-playing ground for all members of the APC; that there is no internal democracy in it and that some people were denied their right to internal democracy.”

The former Lagos State Governor had on Sunday alleged that Tambuwal wants to become president, the reason for his exit from APC: “Governor Tambuwal’s exit can be distilled to one cause. He covets the Presidency.

However, he had not the stomach to challenge President Buhari in a primary. Tambuwal felt further insulted that he would be compelled to face a direct primary just to retain the governorship

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