Uduaghan mourns boat mishap victims, condoles with families
Warri (Delta), March 12, 2019 Former Delta Governor, Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan has expressed sadness over the death of three persons in a boat mishap during the governorship election in the state.
Uduaghan expressed his view in a statement by his Media Aide, Mr Monoyo Edon, which was made available to newsmen in Warri on Tuesday.
The Delta-born politician, who described the incident as as unfortunate, said the victims made the supreme sacrifice while trying to exercise their civic responsibilities.
A boat carrying 23 passengers capsized around Ebrohimi waterway after the boat had a collision with a fishing boat on the election day.
Reports say while some passengers were rescued, the corpses of the deceased were later found floating by the river bank the following day.
Uduaghan, who contested the Delta South Senatorial Districts on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC), also condoled with the families of the deceased.
“These persons paid the supreme price for the nation’s democracy by travelling home to exercise their franchise in the governorship and state houses of assembly elections.
“They died in their quest to ensure that the votes of our people in the riverine areas counted in the March 9 election,” he said.
He said the incident would tell Nigerians the risk Delta South people faced accessing their localities in order to perform their civic duties.
“I commiserate with the family of the deceased, I also wish those receiving treatment in the hospital speedy recovery,” he said.
Nigeria at 59, making the nation great, collective responsibility – Uduaghan
Nigeria at 59, making the nation great, collective responsibility – Uduaghan
The task of making Nigeria great is the collective responsibility of every Nigerian, says former Governor of Delta State, Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan.
Uduaghan, made the remark on Tuesday in a statement to mark the Independence Day in Warri.
The former governor noted that in spite of the numerous challenges facing the country, there were things to be happy about as a nation.
“It is better to use this occasion to focus on the things that unite us, while moving away from issues that drag us backward in our quest to be a progressive nation.
“We are a nation blessed with diversity and young population. Harnessing them with a thriving private sector will set us on a path of prosperity and provide the right environment for more investments.
“Every nation has its manifest challenges. Every great nation we admire has undergone political and socio-economic pruning to arrive at an enviable position.
“This is the first time we are experiencing 20 years of democracy -the longest civilian rule in our 59-year history.
“All our challenges notwithstanding, Nigeria is still one big indivisible entity,” he said.
Uduaghan said that with robust understanding among the National Assembly, Executive and the Economic Advisory Council, the country was on the right path to economic recovery.
Edited by Dorcas Jonah/Ifeyinwa Omowole
Governorship poll: Uduaghan hopeful of APC victory in Delta
Former Delta Governor, Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan, on Saturday expressed optimism that the All Progressives Congress (APC) would emerge victorious in the Saturday’s governorship and assembly elections.
Uduaghan said this shortly after he cast his vote at about 12:05 a.m. in his hometown, Abigborodo in Warri North Local Government Area of Delta.
‘‘We are optimistic of winning the election but let me get the reports first because I don’t know what is happening in other areas.
‘‘I do not know whether people are behaving or misbehaving or there are security challenges in other areas. So, it is difficult to give verdict but I am optimistic,’’ he said.
Uduaghan commended the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for the early arrival of voting materials in Abigborodo
On the security beefed up in Sapele, the former governor said it might not be unconnected with the violence in the last Presidential and National Assembly elections in which two persons were allegedly killed.
‘‘I think the security is tighter in these elections because of what happened in the previous elections.
‘‘The security agencies usually evaluate what is on ground based on information and of course, intelligence report.
‘‘So, maybe the security arrangement this time was because of the previous experience,’’ he said.
Uduaghan, however, expressed joy at the turnout of voters.
Uduaghan faults Delta South Senatorial election
Former Governor of Delta, Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan, has called for the cancellation of last Saturday’s Presidential and National Assembly election in the state.
He made the call in a statement issued by his Media Assistant, Mr Monoyo Edon, on Tuesday in Warri.
Uduaghan, who contested for the Delta South Senatorial District on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC), said the election was marred with irregularities.
“I wish to state that the election was fraught with a lot of electoral malpractices and ballot stuffing.
“It was also crippled with electoral violence in some parts of Burutu, Bomadi, Patani, Warri North and Isoko North Local Government Areas (LGAs) of the state.
“I have already petitioned the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on the irregularities during collation and final announcement of result at the Senatorial Collation Centre in Oleh, Isoko South,” he said.
Uduaghan, however, appealed to APC supporters and the people of Delta South to remain calm as further directives would be communicated soon.
He thanked them for their loyalty throughout the electioneering period.
According to the result announced on Tuesday by INEC Returning Officer, Prof. Oladipupo Adesina, Sen. James Manager polled 258,812 votes to defeat Uduaghan, who scored 125,776 votes.(NNN)
Edited by Tayo Ikujuni
Email. email@example.com. 08039724275
Control your ambition, Uduaghan advises politicians
Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan, The Delta South Senatorial District Candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has urged politicians to weigh the consequences of their ambitions and discourage violence.
“I advise those who are very ambitious to weigh the gains and effects of their ambition.
“When you see that it will lead to violence, please control your ambition, four years is not too long,” Uduaghan said.
Uduaghan, a former governor of Delta, gave the advice after he voted in his hometown, Abigborodo, Warri North Local Government Area.
The former governor, who voted at about 1:00 p.m. in Koko Ward 6, unit 2, said that electoral did not profit anyone and advised those who took violence as a better option to have a re-think.
He lauded the large turn-out of voters for the polls.
He said: “I congratulate Nigerians for coming out en masse to vote. From what I have seen, it is quite good and I hope it will be like that in other parts of the country.
“Nigerians are anxious to vote and we have given them the opportunity. Democracy has come to stay and we will do everything to make it to succeed in Nigeria.
“The accreditation and voting process has been very good.”
The former governor, however, identified late arrival of voting materials at Koko Ward 6 as a challenge.
“We do hope there will be improvement in the subsequent elections,” he said.
Mrs Abel Tomisan, an elderly woman who could not identify her age, said she had been waiting at the polling unit since 9:00 a.m.
“I want to vote, that is my concern,” Tomisan said.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that all the Smart Card Readers deployed at the ward worked without any hitch.
Voters at Ward 7, unit 7 and 8 in Sapele said the elections in both units were peaceful. (NNN)
Edited by Mustapha Lamidi/Nyisom Dore
Tribunal sacks Manager from Senate, orders election rerun within 90 days
The Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Asaba, on Saturday, nullified the election of Senator James Manager of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the senator representing Delta South senatorial district.
The Nigeria News Agency reports that the tribunal Chairman, Justice O. O. Onyeabo, in his judgment, ordered a re-run within 90 days.
Former Gov. Emmanuel Uduaghan, candidate of the All Progressives Party (APC) at the Feb. 2019 National Assembly Elections, had approached the tribunal, praying it to invalidate the victory of Manager.
Uduaghan, in his petition, alleged that there were widespread electoral malpractices by the PDP and INEC.
Justice Onyeabo, in his judgment, ordered INEC to withdraw the certificate of return issued to Manger.
The tribunal chairman said that the defendants could not defend the allegations of over-voting and other irregularities during the election.
The petitioner had listed the areas where the electoral irregularities were discovered to include Burutu, Bomadi, Patani, Isoko North, Warri South-West and Warri North local government areas.
In his reaction however, Counsel to Manager, Mr Larry Selekeowei (SAN), said that his client was not satisfied with the judgment.
He told newsmen shortly after the judgment that they would go back and study the judgment thoroughly before appealing it.
Meanwhile, the election petitions tribunal panel I, presided over by Justice A. M. Abubakar, has affirmed the victory of the Deputy Senate Predident, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege (APC), representing Delta Central Senatorial District.
The tribunal chairman, in his judgment delivered on Saturday, declared that the petition, filed by the PDP and its candidate, Evelyn Oboro, lacked merit and consequently struck it out.
Oboro had, in her petition, prayed the tribunal to declare her as the winner of the election, citing electoral irregularities. (NAN)
Edited by Chioma Ugboma and ‘Wale Sadeeq
Gov. Okowa sends names of 8 commissioner nominees to State Assembly
Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta on Tuesday forwarded the names of eight nominees for appointment as Commissioners to the State Assembly for screening and confirmation.
The Speaker of the house, Sheriff Oborevwori, read out the names of the nominees at the plenary in Asaba, including four that served as commissioners in the last administration.
Those that served in the last administration were Chief Patrick Ukah (Information), Peter Mrakpor, (Justice), James Augoye (Works) and Mr Chika Ossai (Land and Urban Renewal).
Others nomimees are Chief Festus Ochonogor, former Special Adviser to Okowa; Mr Basil Ganagana, former Speaker, Delta Assembly, Mrs Florence Alantan, and Prof. Patrick Muobogharen, former commissioner under Gov. Emmanuel Uduaghan.
The Deputy Speaker, Christopher Ochor, moved a motion for the receipt of the nomination letter for consideration which was unanimously adopted after Charles Emetulu (PDP-Ndokwa West) had seconded it.
The speaker directed the nominees to submit 35 copies of their Curriculum Vitae each to the office of the Clerk of the House on or before Wednesday and appear before the house on Thursday for screening.
The house also approved the governor’s request for the appointment of 15 Special Advisers.
Meanwhile, the speaker has announced the names of the principal officers of the house as nominated by the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the opposition, the All Progressives Party (APC) .
Oborevwori announced Mr Tim Owhefere as the Majority Leader, Mr Oboro Preyor, Deputy Majority Leader; Mrs Pat Ajudua, Chief Whip; Mr Solomon Ighrakpata, Deputy Chief Whip and Mr Festus Okoh, Majority Whip .
Mr Innocent Anidi (APC-Ughelli North II) was announced as the Minority Leader and Mr Moses Anaughe as the Minority Whip.
Edited by Ejike Obeta
Former NNN MD urges Atiku to emulate Jonathan and congratulate President Buhari
Mr Ima Niboro, former Managing Director of the News Agency of Nigeria (NNN) has urged the PDP presidential candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar to congratulate President Muhammadu Buhari in spirit of sportsmanship.
Speaking with newsmen on Wednesday in his residence in Warri, Niboro said that the victory for Buhari was inevitable.
Niboro, who is also the Director-General of the All Progressive Congress (APC) Door-to-Door Campaign in Delta, averred that it was “statistically impossible” for Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party to emerge victory in the contest.
He, therefore, advised Abubakar and the PDP to emulate former President Jonathan and congratulate President Buhari.
The former MD also urged the PDP to reorganise the party, win over more governors and challenge the APC for the presidency in 2023.
According to Niboro, as long as politics thrives on structures and not on day dreams and wishful thinking, it is structurally impossible for the PDP candidate to oust the sitting APC president.
“As at the day of the elections, APC was in control of 22 states, while the PDP controlled 13states and All Progressive Grand Alliance controls one state.
“No governor will surrender his state to the opposition; the template of the presidential elections will be the same with the coming gubernatorial elections.
“The votes in the presidential elections were consistent with the structural realities of Nigeria’s party politics.
”The Sokoto and Gombe went inevitably to the APC because the structures that emplaced those PDP governors were actually and presently APC both in content and character,” he said.
Niboro attributed the failure of Bukola Saraki of the PDP in Kwara to “a protest movement marshaled by his blood sister, Gbemi, in alliance with Alhaji Lai Mohammed and the wealthy and politically savvy Abdulrasaq family.
“The same thing happened in the South South, even though in reverse order.
“Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom and Emmanuel Uduaghan of Delta, both former two term governors and APC members lost to the PDP.
”They lost simply because the structures that undergird the politics of Akwa Ibom and Delta are still powerfully PDP, even though the APC is making greater inroads every day.
“As far as I know, the only states that went out of character are Ondo and Oyo.
“But I am certain you will find, upon greater interrogation that those protest votes were not against Buhari but against the internal power structures of both states,” Niboro said. (NNN)
Edited by Maureen Atuonwu
Remains of Chief Sonny Odogwu laid to rest in Asaba
Remains of Chief Sonny Odogwu laid to rest in Asaba
By Ifeanyi Olannye
In a sermon during a requiem mass at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, West-end, Asaba, Most Rev. Michael Elue, the Catholic Bishop of Isele-Uku Diocese, said Odogwu led a good life that touched humanity positively.
Elue said people should live right and impact others positively in order to attract the mercies of God even at death and make haven.
He said though the loss of a loved one was painful, death was sacrosanct and must come at the will of the creator, God.
”So, we have the duty to live right because we can only be assured of eternal rest with God based on how we lived our lives.
”There are two realities: one is to be born and the other is to die. We shall be remembered for the good or bad that we did while we lived,” he said.
Also, Arch Bishop Emmanuel Chukwuma of Enugu Diocese, Anglican Communion, tasked politicians to emulate the life of late Odogwu.
Chukwuma said that the country was in a sorry state at present because politicians had all become selfish and desirous to satisfy themselves rather than render service to all.
He described late Odogwu as a ”great father, friend, uncle, a successful business icon of international standard and a philanthropists who had directly impacted humanity.
”Late Odogwu was a jolly hard working man, a philanthropists and that is what Nigerians need.
“Politicians must work hard; many of our politicians are lazy and are seeking for their own selves.
”Nigeria is in trouble and we need more people like Sonny Odogwu who did not think of himself but about people, particularly the less privilege ones,” Chukwuma said.
On his part, Rev. Fr. Emmanuel Ede, Founder, Catholic Prayer Ministry of the Holy Spirit, Elele, Rivers, said that the deceased directly impacted his life, the church, Nigeria, Africa and the world.
”He would be remembered for his philanthropy and all the 16,000 staff of Madona University and millions of persons impacted will continue to pray for him,” he said.
Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta, said Odogwu’s demise was ‘regrettable’ but added that he had left a legacy for everyone to uphold.
Okowa represented by his deputy, Mr Kingsley Otuaro, said the Delta Government was deeply touched by Odogwu’s death and shared in the pains experienced by his family and associates.
The governor prayed God to give the family fortitude to bear the irreparable lose.
Many dignitaries graced the occasion including Gov. Godwin Obaseki of Edo, former Delta Governors, Chief James Ibori and Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan and former Gov. Okwesilieze Nwodo of Enugu State.
Also, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Vice Presidential Candidate, Peter Obi and former Gov. Victor Attah of Akwa Ibom were in attendance, among others. (NNN)
Edited by Fela Fashoro/Ejike Obeta
Ex-Gov. Ibori released from UK jail
Former Gov. James Ibori of Delta has been released from prison in the United Kingdom.
Reports say he was released on Tuesday, having agreed to be deported after serving half of his 13-year prison sentence.
But it has now emerged that the Home Secretary, Amber Rudd did not intend to deport Ibori to Nigeria until he handed over £18 million of “proceeds of crime.”
A High Court judge said attempts to detain him were “quite extraordinary.”
Ordering Ibori to be immediately freed from prison, Mrs Justice May said: “You don’t hold someone just because it is convenient to do so and without plans to deport them.”
A Home Office application that Ibori be electronically tagged and subjected to strict curfew conditions was also rejected.
The judge accepted arguments that the home secretary was attempting to misuse her immigration and deportation powers.
Ibori, a former London store cashier, was jailed for fraud totalling nearly £50 million in April 2012.
He evaded capture in Nigeria after a mob of supporters attacked police but was arrested in Dubai in 2010 and extradited to the UK, where he was prosecuted based on evidence from the Metropolitan Police.
On Wednesday, the Home Office’s barrister said the government was concerned that Ibori might “frustrate confiscation proceedings” and wanted him kept in jail or subjected to strict controls on his movement.
“This is extraordinary”, Mrs Justice May said. They (the CPS) don’t care.
“Why doesn’t the Secretary of State just send him back?” she asked. “He wants to go. She wants him to go.”
The conviction of James Ibori followed a government anti-corruption campaign led by the Department for International Development (DfID) 10 years ago.
In court on Wednesday, Ibori’s barrister, Ivan Krolic, explained how another defendant in the fraud case had appealed against conviction on the grounds that “police officers in the investigations had been corrupt.”
“The Court of Appeal rejected that after counsel for the Crown indicated that there was nothing to support the allegation”, Mr Krolic explained.
Ordering Ibori’s release, Justice May said: “The Secretary of State appears to have taken it upon herself that Ibori does remain in this country, in apparent contradiction of the order served earlier this year to deport him.
“The position of the Secretary of State, as very candidly set out by Birdling (representing the home secretary), is that she accepts that there is an argument that she has no power to detain him.
“I have decided that the balance of convenience falls heavily in favour of his immediate release. I am not prepared to impose conditions involving tagging or curfews.”
The judge said the matter of Ibori’s deportation should be heard before the end of January.
A source close to the flamboyant politician, who remained a political force in his native Delta state throughout his years of travail, however, said it was not comprehensible whether Ibori would fly to Nigeria.
“This is in view of legal proceedings concerning the confiscation of his assets worth tens of millions of dollars, still up in the air.’’
Ibori, who ruled Delta from 1999-2007 was one of the most influential governors during his time and he established a political dynasty that produced his successor Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan and the incumbent Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa.
Despite the legal entanglements and the prospect of Ibori taking his case to the Court of Appeal, the mood among his kinsmen and politicians in the state, especially Peoples Democratic Party faithful is that he should return.
Reports say Oghara is wearing a new look with banners bearing pictures of the ex-governor strategically displayed at different roundabouts within the town.
Associates and loyalists are also catching up on the event to pledge their loyalty to Ibori as they adorn the banners with their pictures side by side the former governor.
Some of the banners, which were placed at the Market Roundabout, Ibori Roundabout and entrance of Oghara, have inscriptions such as: “Welcome back home, our national leader”, “The political messiah and his kinsmen” and “The resource control living legend.
“His ordeal, God’s plan to fortify him.’’
“Since he left, there had been lots of misgivings and backwardness in the area in the hope that when he arrives, so many things would change positively.”
“We are prepared to follow him and we are convinced that he is going to lead us to the Promised Land’’, some of his followers told Journalists.
“We have the belief that there is a plan for him by God,” Ofa, a key loyalist said.
Edited by: Julius Enehikhuere