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Nnamdi Kanu Is Safe and In London —- Orji Uzor Kalu

Gbemileke Ajayi

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Former Governor of Abia state, Orji Uzor Kalu, has countered the impressions that the leader of the Independent People of Biafra (IPOB), Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, is in the custody of Nigerian military, but that Kanu is safe and currently in London.

The crises rocking the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) over the nomination of candidates at the national, states and local government levels is only natural because “politicians agree to disagree in any political setting and for the development of the polity,” Kalu also hinted.

Kalu, who made the declaration when he visited former Military President, General Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida (IBB) to drum support for the second tenure of President Muhammadu Buhari, however, did not give details.

“Nnamdi Kanu is where I told you he is, he is in London. He is safe”, former Governor Uzor Kalu told journalists after a closed-door meeting with the former President General Babangida at his uphill residence in Minna, Niger state capital on Tuesday.

Uzor Kalu said he was in Minna to woo former President Ibrahim Babangida on the second term of President Muhammadu Buhari “because virtually all the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential aspirants had been coming to him for blessings.”

On the outcome of the meeting which lasted nearly two hours, the former Abia state Governor said, “I have talked to him (Babangida) to allow Buhari finish his second term, we have discussed, he is thinking about it, February 16 is still a long way.

“Our discussion was positive it is blue and white,” Uzor Kalu said, arguing however that all that Nigeria needed now was to build cohesion in the nation, “We need continuity of government and that is important that President be allowed to continue after 2019.”

According to Kalu, “Buhari is the head of government he has played four years he is almost done with the first half as it is done in football. He has played 45 minutes, it remains 45 minutes, we should allow him to finish the game”.

Kalu who appears not considering the pains Nigerians were going through and which has given rise to the clamour for a change in government said, “We appeal to Nigerians to allow him finish his second term, it makes more sense.”

The former Abia state Governor said he had also been soliciting for the support of other prominent Nigerians at home and abroad, adding that, “even foreigners” for the realisation of the second term Presidential ambition President Buhari.

He, however, declared that his campaign for the re-election of President Buhari had nothing to do with South-Eastern Nigeria getting the Presidency in 2023 or for his personal ambition of becoming the next President after 2023.

Kalu, one of the PDP decampees to the ruling APC further explained pointed out that the year, 2023 was still a long way and time would tell if he would vie for President or not then.

Meanwhile, Orji Uzor Kalu has described the crises within the ruling APC over the nomination of candidates as part of politicking.

According to Uzor Kalu, “The crisis is part of political development if there is no crisis there will not be political development. Crisis is what makes political development there must be crisis and there must be solution”.

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DSS Gave Me $500,000 To Set-Up Lawan — Femi Otedola

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The trial of former Rep. Farouk Lawan resumed in Abuja on Monday with Mr Femi Otedola, testifying that the $500,000 offered to the accused was from Department of State Service (DSS).

Business magnate Otedola appeared before before Justice Angela Otaluka of the FCT High Court, Apo as a prosecution witness in the ongoing trial of Lawan.

He said the money was given to him by the DSS to set a trap for Lawan after he wrote a petition against him.

He accused Lawan of demanding 3 million dollars as bribe from him to exonerate his oil company, Zenon Petroleum and Gas Ltd, from the alleged subsidy scam in 2012.

He further told the court that the 500,000 dollars was part payment of the 3 million dollars being demanded by Lawan, which was eventually given to him under the supervision of the DSS.

Otedola said he petitioned the DSS immediately Lawan demanded for the bribe.

“Lawan said he was going to exonerate my company after giving him the money, security cameras were mounted in my living room to capture the exchange of money between me and the defendant.

“The video is with the DSS, the money was given to him in two tranches $250,000 each,” he said.

When reminded by Chief Ozekhome, that the best time “to catch a thief is when the operation is ongoing,” Otedola said he did not know why DSS failed to arrest Lawan at that moment.

The Judge, however, adjourned the matter till March 8 for continuation of cross examination of the prosecution witness.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Lawan is being prosecuted by the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC) for allegedly collecting 500,000 dollars out of 3 million dollars bribe.

The money was said to have been requested to remove Otedola’s company’s name from the list of firms indicted by the House of Representatives Adhoc Committee on Fuel Subsidy in 2012.

(NAN)

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Minimum Wage: Nationwide Protest Begins Tuesday — NLC

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There will be a nationwide protest on Tuesday by Nigerian workers to press for a higher minimum wage, the Nigeria Labour Congress said today.

However, the union’s general secretary, Dr. Peter Ozo-Eson clarified that the action is not a strike.

The umbrella labour union, along with the Trade Union Congress, wants minimum wage jacked from N18,000 to N30,000.

“It has come to our attention that some sections of the news media have largely misrepresented our action plan in reaction to the delay in transmitting the recommendations of the Tripartite Committee on a new national minimum wage to the National Assembly by President Muhammadu Buhari.

“It should be recalled that the National Executive Council of the NLC met on December 17 last year and directed that we hold nationwide mobilisation of workers and our allies if, by December 31, 2018, the bill on the national minimum wage has yet to be sent to the National Assembly to be passed as an Act of Parliament.

“We immediately announced then that on Tuesday, January 8, 2019, there will be a nationwide mass mobilisation and protests simultaneously across all states in Nigeria. This does not translate to a strike.” (NAN)

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BREAKING: Shehu Shagari Dies At 93

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Nigerian’s Second Republic President, Alhaji Shehu Usman Aliyu Shagari, GCFR, is dead.

Shagari reportedly died at the National Hospital Abuja on Friday after a brief illness.

He died at the age of 93.

His demise was announced on twitter by his grandson, Bello Shagari.

Bello wrote, ”I regret announcing the death of my grandfather, H.E Alhaji Shehu Shagari, who died right now after brief illness at the National hospital, Abuja.”

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