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2019: Kogi PDP Denies Sen. Attai Aidoko Automatic Ticket

Gbemileke Ajayi

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All is not going well concerning the bid by the lawmaker representing Kogi East Senatorial District of Kogi State, Senator Attai Aidoko, to return to the upper legislative chamber of the National Assembly under the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as his ambition suffered another setback.

This is consequent upon the Kogi State Peoples Democratic Party leaders’ refusal to grant him an automatic ticket to vie for the position this time at the 2019 general elections.

This newspaper learnt last week that Aidoko was told by leaders of the Party that unlike Senator Dino Melaye, his desire for an automatic ticket was an impossible task for a number of reasons including the fact that the understanding for the automatic ticket was made with the rAPC members for which he’s not one. Secondly, having been in the National Assembly for 16 years, it was assumed that his popularity would make it easy for him to win the primaries election if he has done well for his constituency.

This latest development has forced the senator to adopt unusual means in a last-ditch effort to return to the National Assembly, apparently against the wishes of Kogi East people.

Senator Aidoko who was full of confidence that he would clinch the party ticket was naturally deflated by this development. He has therefore taken to regular visits to Senator Dino with the hope that the latter’s goodwill and Saraki connection may fetch him the ticket at the primaries billed to take place on October 1, 2018.

Aidoko is also allegedly making a lot of underground manoeuvres to tinker with the list of the recently concluded ad hoc delegates’ lists.

It would be recalled that the youths in Kogi East Senatorial District recently called on Senator Aidoko to halt his re-election bid as the zone was not ready for his return to represent them.

The youths under the aegis (Kogi Youths Arise Network) led by its coordinator, Mr Mohammed Misah had condemned those they referred to as social media propagandists, who they said spin lies and launder the image of Aidoko for a political makeover for 2019.

The youths said: “We don’t know what we want, where we are coming from and where we are headed.

“The Igala youths of today have failed to differentiate between their political enemies and political saviours.”

The youths had said that it was under Aidoko’s watch that Ibaji oil wells were ceded to Anambra State.

“Senator Aidoko has provided poor representation, starting from his days in the House of Representatives, where he represented Ankpa/Omala/Olamaboro Federal Constituency from 2003 to 2011, and served as Chairman, House Committee on Federal Capital Territory and later as Chairman, Senate Committee on SEGS.

“As a senator, he can’t point at one single thing as an achievement that we can call his constituency project.

“He is only after his personal interest and that of his godfather, which is not good for our people in need of development.

“In fact, Aidoko is a liability on the good people of Kogi East and he has no political relevance in both the region and at the national level.”

The youths noted that Aidoko hails from Ugbamaka-Igah in Olamaboro Local Government Area and that as the chairman, Senate Committee on Sustainable Development Goals, there is “no project that has come to our land.”
Aidoko, they explained, is not in any way familiar with the saying that “charity begins at home,” while stressing that his people have no water, electricity, telephone network, schools, bank and Automated Teller Machine in the entire Olamaboro and “of course, no proper healthcare system yet, we have someone at the Senate representing us.

“Aidoko that we know always visits Igalaland at night and sneaks out before the crack of dawn.

“We can’t continue to wallow in this politics of stagnation where some wicked few individuals will gather together to oppose everything that is good for our land.

“Our region has suffered so much neglect despite the facts that we have several opportunities to develop, but we have been suffering so much neglect because of the attitude of some of our leaders.

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Transcorp Sets Record Performance With Profit After Tax Of N20.6bn

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Transnational Corporation of Nigeria Plc (Transcorp), Nigeria’s leading diversified listed conglomerate, has announced its audited results for the year ended 31st December 2018, with a 94% growth in Profit After Tax (PAT) of ₦20.6bn in 2018 compared to ₦10.6bn in the prior year.

The Group recorded an unparalleled improvement within the year as turnover grew by 30% to ₦104.2bn. Profit Before Tax (PBT) increased to ₦22.4bn from ₦12.3bn in 2017, depicting an 82% year on year growth.

“We’re proud to have ended the year on a high-note while sustaining a strong performance, which is a reflection of our sound business strategy,” said Valentine Ozigbo, Transcorp’s President and Chief Executive Officer, who took over at Transcorp in January 2019. “We will continuously strive to deliver significant value to our stakeholders while achieving our long-term goals,” he said.

He further stressed that “This result was achieved due to the increased revenue from the power and hospitality segments of the group. In addition, we were able to cut down on our loss from Forex arising from financing activities by 30% year-on-year as we experienced a relatively stable exchange rate during the fiscal year-ended 2018, this no doubt impacted our Profit before tax as it soared 82% year-on-year.”

Mr. Ozigbo added ”Transcorp Power Ltd has continued to explore opportunities created by the eligible customer framework initiated by the Federal Government. We are at an advanced stage of negotiations with a number of eligible customers, which will translate into transactions in the months ahead. Our hospitality subsidiary, Transcorp Hotels Plc, also maintained its history of profitability in 2018, displaying the impact of our recent US$100m upgrade at the Transcorp Hilton Abuja and the immense value placed on the hotel’s best-in-class hospitality services.”

Reflecting on the results, the Chairman of Transcorp, Mr. Tony O. Elumelu, CON, stated, “We remain committed to our purpose of improving lives and transforming Nigeria by powering our industries and businesses while providing our local and international guests with unrivalled hospitality services. This is our way of creating sustainable value for all our stakeholders.”

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RRS Nabs Robbery Syndicate Terrorising College Road/Faagba/Abbattoir Areas Of Lagos [PHOTO]

Gbemileke Ajayi

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The hands of the law have finally caught up with a group of robbers after the operative of Rapid Response Squad (RRS), a unit of Lagos State Police Command arrested the syndicate believed to have been terrorizing College Road, Fagba, and Abattoir areas of the state.

As for this group of boys, their diversity in terms of language and ethnicity was never a barrier as they were united in forming a gang with the sole interest of robbing Lagosians of their valuables.

The robbers were arrested on Valentine’s day at around 9:00 p.m at College Road, Ifako – Ijaiye area of Lagos, after the gang had robbed more than five passers by of their valuables brandishing knives and other harmful objects.

The suspects, whose names are: Lekan Akinyemi (23), Chimeze Ofulie( 18), Babangida Abdullahi (22), Abubakar Umaru (30), Samuel Oyinloye (24), Timileyin Oladipupo (27) and Habeeb Olayinka. 

All the suspects said they came from different parts of the country but reside in Abattoir, Agege, Lagos.

The suspects had on Thursday, robbed one Agafe Augustine after he alighted from a taxi at College Road, Ifako Ijaiye. Amongst the items collected from him by the gang were; an android phone, N14,000 and a handbag.

According to Agafe, “I allowed them to rob me because they were many and were holding dangerous objects but I trailed them to an open place before raising alarm. This drew the attention of some RRS officers on patrol in the area and they arrested some of them”.

He added “ they equally robbed some other victims amongst whom were a lady in company of her boyfriend. They dispossessed them of their phones and  stabbed her boyfriend who refused to let go of his mobile phone after parting with his wallet”.

In his confessional statement to the crime , one of the suspects said they specialise in robbing passersby  at  night collecting their mobile phones, bags, jewelry and wallets.

Investigation by the police revealed that one of the suspects, Timileyin Oladipupo popularly known as ‘Timi Yahoo’, specialised  in working on SIM cards of the stolen phones to determine which ones are internet banking enabled  to facilitate the gang access to transfering money from victims’ accounts.

The suspect disclosed “I have worked on so many SIM cards given to me by Lekan and other groups in Agege Abbatior and what I do is to further increase our gain from the robbery by transfering victim’s money from their bank accounts after using some softwares to determine how much are lodged inside their accounts and we also share the proceeds”.

The Lagos State Commissioner of Police  Mu’azu Zubairu  who ordered the arrest of all the gang members, added that they be transferred to SARS for a thorough investigation.

He noted that the gang be charged to court as soon as investigations are completed.

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Postpone General Elections To Allow Zamfara APC Field Candidates — AGF Tells INEC

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The Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN), has asked the Independent National Electoral Commission to allow the All Progressives Congress in Zamfara State field candidates for the general elections.

Malami, who doubles as the Minister of Justice, made the call in a letter to INEC dated February 13 and made available to the News Agency of Nigeria.

The minister said that INEC could not foreclose the right of a political party to participate in elections without recourse to the Act.

He said: “My office received a petition from the firm of M. A. Mahmud, (SAN) & CO, in respect of the need to urgently consider Sections 38 and 39 of the Electoral Act and extend the time for the APC Zamfara to field a gubernatorial candidate in the light of a Zamfara High Court judgment in suit No.ZMS/GS/52/2018.

“The letter was requesting that the subsisting judgment in the suit be upheld and respected by INEC, as the Court of Appeal has upheld the appeal with No. CA/S/23/2019; thus effectively annulling the grounds upon which the purported cancellation of the APC Primaries in Zamfara by INEC was based.”

Malami in the letter invited INEC to comply with the judgment of the Court of Appeal by admitting the results of the APC Zamfara State primaries.

He also invited INEC to comply with the provisions of Section 38 of the Electoral Act, which empowers the commission to postpone the election for the governorship, National Assembly and House of Assembly elections.

He said this was in view of the fact that since the Court of Appeal had upheld the primaries as valid, the APC in Zamfara State would need a little time to catch up with its contemporaries in the election.

He said: “Granting them this concession is not necessarily a favour but a right that inures to all contestants under similar circumstances.”

The AGF maintained that by the doctrine and principle of judicial precedence, the appeal superseded the Federal High Court’s position which foreclosed APC Zamfara State from fielding candidates in the February and March general elections.

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