Weekly political notes

Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose

2019: Fayose Launches Presidential Campaign On Facebook, Twitter
Ekiti State governor, Ayo Fayose, has commenced activities towards his ambition to become president of Nigeria in 2019.
On Monday, the governor launched his campaign on Twitter and Facebook, by opening accounts in the name of his presidential campaign on both platforms.

His spokesman, Lere Olayinka, however, reportedly disclosed that the campaign has not been officially launched.
Olayinka said what happened on Monday was the opening of the official Twitter and Facebook accounts on the social media.

“When we officially launch the campaign, everyone will know about it,” he said.

Fayose had recently boasted that he would wrest power from the ruling All Progressives Congress come 2019.

Fayose has commenced in earnest what he knows how to do best. Which is, staying in the public space and attracting attention. Constitutionally, Fayose is qualified to contest for the office of the president in 2019, but kick-starting his campaign now may have left much to be desired. Having said before now that he would not contest for another term when his present tenure expires, only to recant recently, that he would approach Supreme Court for interpretation on his truncated first term as governor. One is tempted to ask, what exactly do you want, Fayose?

Is Fayose saying that he is not part of, or in support of the Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) earlier decision to zone the 2019 presidency to the North? It is hoped that Fayose is conscious of the fact that PDP has just been rescued from protracted leadership crisis of which he (Fayose) contributed immensely. Ambitious political actions like Fayose’s, might plunge the party into another crisis ahead of 2019, if not well handled. Maybe, Fayose is just trying to position and negotiate himself into the emerging equation, perhaps for a vice presidential slot.

Buhari Approves Everything I Ask For Niger Delta-Boroh
Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta, Paul Boroh, said President Muhammadu Buhari approved everything he asked for concerning his activities in the Niger Delta.

Boroh, who is also the Coordinator, Presidential Amnesty Programme, said President Buhari’s commitment had brought about peace in the region.
“The main reason the Niger Delta is stable today is because of the total commitment of Muhammadu Buhari in ensuring that the Niger-Delta is peaceful and stable.

It is hoped that Boroh is not sounding sycophantic, instead of being specific and blunt. This is considering the fact that there are still a lot to do in Niger Delta, beyond Amnesty Programme. If Boroh is talking about the Amnesty Programme, it is understandable. But that does not mean that all is now well with the programme since Buhari became president.

Boroh should be reminded that despite the fanfare and expectations that characterised the launch of Ogoni clean up, nothing meaningful has been done in that direction by the Buhari government till date. Going forward, it is expected of Boroh to bring it to the attention of Buhari that the region is crying for urgent attention.

Besides, even the restive and unemployed youths in the region, who are supposed to be beneficiaries of the programme are complaining of being sidelined and abandoned. Recently, they hinted of their plan to resume militancy in the region. It is hoped that Boroh’s postulation will not instigate another round of militancy in the region again.

Magu: Presidency Takes Case To Supreme Court
The Presidency has reiterated its stance that certain federal appointments should not require Senate’s confirmation.

It said the refusal by the Senate to confirm the appointment of the acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Ibrahim Magu, has more to do with politics than with the law.

This is the position of a legal advisory prepared by judicial and legal experts as a working document in the Presidency on the differences in the constitutional interpretations on matters of certain federal appointments.

The Senate had on July 4 passed a resolution suspending all issues relating to the confirmation of nominees and urged Acting President Yemi Osinbajo to respect the constitution and laws as they relate to nominees’ confirmation.

But the presidency’s legal advisory, concluded that a judicial pronouncement, “preferably by the Supreme Court, is what will settle the matter.”

A government source said that though it was the view of the Presidency that certain federal appointments should not require the confirmation of the Senate based on Section 171 of the Constitution, the present administration had continued to send such appointments to the Senate pending the ultimate judicial interpretation of the matter.

Even though, this move by the presidency is belated, it is better late than never. The decision of the Apex Court on this matter will settle the executive-legislative rift over appointments and confirmation, especially as it concerns the EFCC chairman.

Now, that the executive has done so, it is expected of the Senate and the presidency to abide by whatever decision reached by the apex court. Neither the Senate nor the presidency should see the move and its outcome as an affront or political fight. It is all about following democratic procedure and constitutionalism to deepen democratic governance in the country.

Only Miracle Can Stop PDP from Retaking Power in 2019-Makarfi
The National Caretaker Committee Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Ahmed Makarfi, has said that if the party sustains its current momentum, it will only take a miracle for it not to win back the presidency in 2019.

Speaking at a meeting of the expanded national caucus of the party held at the national headquarters in Abuja, Makarfi said all the party needs to do is to close ranks and work hard to realise the target.

“If PDP sustains the current effort at rebuilding its structures, I assure you it would only take a miracle for us not to win the election in 2019.”

Makarfi’s assertion is expected and possible if PDP does the needful ahead of 2019. Coming out of a protracted leadership crisis, PDP needs a competent leadership that will serve as a rallying point and provides the right direction. This is because rebuilding the party may be more challenging for its members than winning the 2019 elections.

The party leadership should be mindful of the urgent need to truly bring all party members on the same page, especially the governors, who appear to be on different pages during the crisis. Also of importance to the party are issue of cohesion, genuine reconciliation and peace. To achieve this, the party leadership and the governors must be on the same page. Ahead of 2019 presidency, inordinate ambition of some party leaders capable of instigating crisis in the party should be curtailed.

Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki

Edo Guber: I Prayed For Victory At My Grandfather’s Grave –Obaseki
Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, has disclosed how his prayers at his late grandfather’s grave led to his victory at the September 28, 2016 governorship election.

He disclosed this during a thanksgiving service held at the New Covenant Gospel Church, Benin, organised for his victory at the Supreme Court.
The governor said: “When I decided to run for the office of the governor, I went to tell my uncle, Justice Andrew Otutu Obaseki  (now late) and seek his blessings.

“He sat me down and prayed for me. And after his prayers, he asked my uncle to take me to my grandfather’s grave to pray and ask for whatever I wanted.

“I did exactly that.  And throughout, he was in prayers for me till the Monday, when I got my victory at the Supreme Court.”

Obaseki has shown that like his master and predecessor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, he too has mastered the art of political pedantry. How could he attribute his victory at Supreme Court to prayer at his grandfather’s grave? What has his victory at Supreme Court got to do with his praying at a graveside? Is he saying that he was rigged into office and prayer made the judges to rule in his favour at the Supreme Court?

But why should anybody be surprised with Obaseki’s confession, when Nigerian politicians are the same. Obaseki can say anything he likes because he has won, but let him spare Nigerians these tales by the moonlight. Meanwhile, how Obaseki won at Supreme Court is immaterial now. What is at stake is how he will provide good governance in Edo State, considering that all legal encumberances before him have been removed. Obaseki, the ball is in your court.

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