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Oil ownership: Niger Delta monarchs, CSOs sue NASS, demand N1tn damages

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The planned amendment of the 1999 constitution may hit the rocks with Niger Delta ethnic minorities, monarchs, and civil society organisations in the region asking a Federal High Court in Abuja to stop exercise in the National Assembly.

Ijaw national leader and first Republic Federal Commissioner of Information, Edwin Clark, and ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo had both been at loggerheads over the ownership of oil in the Niger Delta.

While Clark said oil was for the Niger Delta, Obasanjo said oil belongs to Nigeria and God.

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While describing the exercise as illegal, the monarchs and CSOs under the aegis of the Peoples
Confederal Constituents Assembly of Nigeria and Center for Probity and Democratic Studies also demanded N1 trillion damages.

Among the reliefs from the Court were “an order stopping the continued illegal amendment of the purpose expired military ‘Abubakar’ constitution and an order directing the re-adoption of the existing unrepealed and unabrogated people-made 1963 Republican constitution/Nigerian ground norm.”

The plaintiffs were the Regent King of Diobu Kingdom in Delta Nigeria, King Oziwe Amba Albert; Chief Wombo Bulus, Otunba Karim Sekanobi, Chief James Onyi Kokomi, Comrade Danjuma Modu – for themselves and representing the PECCAN and Center for Probity and Democratic Studies.

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The suit with Ref. No: FHC/ABJ/CS/8/22 was filed on behalf of the plaintiffs by their lawyer, Peter Odion, and obtained by journalists in Abuja on Friday.

According to them, the N1 trillion damages was for the violation of their rights in amending and “using the expired military decreed constitution as an instrument to suppress, oppress, dominate, re-colonise” and seize the natural resources of the applicants and their protected rights under the African and UN charter to own and use their properties and natural resources as also enshrined in the 1963 constitution providing for 50 percent royalties paid for the regions.

The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, Clerk of the National Assembly, and Chairman of Senate Committee on Constitution Amendment were listed as respondents.

The suit was titled, “Notice of application for an order enforcing a fundamental right
brought pursuant to Order 2 Rule I of the FREP Rules 2009 Chapter IV, S. 35, 36, 42, 46, 315 and transition constitution decree NO. 24 of 1999, S. 1, 140 of the 1963 Republican constitution of Nigeria, Article, 13, 14, 20 & 21 of the African Charter on Peoples and human rights and Enforcement Act CAP A. 9 LFN 2004; Articles 1,2,7, 21 & 30 of the United Nations Universal Declaration of human rights; international covenant on civil and political rights.”

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Nigeria Newspapers

Ekiti APC governorship primary fraudulent: Kayode Ojo

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By Idowu Gabriel

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An All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship aspirant in Ekiti, Mr Kayode Ojo, has accused his party of conducting a fraudulent governorship primary election.

Ojo said what the Governorship Primary Election Committee did with the conduct of the exercise in Ekiti, was a complete disgrace to APC.

He alleged that figures were concocted for aspirants even when no election was held.

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The aggrieved APC aspirant stated this on Friday while addressing newsmen in Ado-Ekiti.

“What we witnessed in Ekiti on Thursday and the day preceding the election showed that the election had been compromised even before it was conducted.

“With this, it was clear that the committee was not in Ekiti for a credible poll, but to see to the emergence of the anointed aspirant.

“But for now, I can confirm to you that the APC has no legal and credible candidate in Ekiti. By the results, one could attest to the fact that those figures were fake, concocted by the committee to suit their purpose,” he said.

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Furthermore, Ojo explained that the aspirants asked the committee about the personalities that would be used as Returning Officers on Wednesday, it did not give any useful answer.

He said that majority of the people used as Returning Officers were members of the APC state executives, appointees of government and elected party members, who are stooges and parts of the campaign council.

“The election committee asked us to nominate 20 people to be used as Returning Officers, up till now, we did not see where our lists were included, the original list was not updated.

“Those we gave to them were not posted to where they would monitor the election. Nobody won any election here in Ekiti. We all reject this craziness.

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“We have resolved to stand against this injustice. We are seeking every peaceful avenue to ensure that we have a process that would produce a credible candidate in Ekiti. It will be a disaster for APC to approach this election in this disgraceful manner.”

The aggrieved aspirant advised the National leadership of the party and the Presidency to intervene in the primary, which he described as nullity and illegality.

However, he called on President Mohammadu Buhari to intervene before APC crumbles in Ekiti.

NAN

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Taraba crowns new Aku-Uka of Wukari

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Manu Ishaku Ada Ali has been crowned Aku-Uka of Wukari in the Kwararafa Kingdom of Wukari Local Government Area of Taraba State.

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His installation came barely three months after the demise of the chairman, Taraba Council of Chiefs, Dr Shekarau Angyu Masa-Ibi Kuvyu II.

The new Aku, who is the son of the 23rd Aku-Uka, Ada Ali Agbumanu, who reigned from 1974-1976, hails from the Bama Ruling House.

His coronation, which took place on Friday in Wukari council, brought together the Jukun race from far and near as well as dignitaries from the nooks and crannies of the country.

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The new monarch, who is the 25th Aku-Uka of Kwararafa kingdom, was installed by the Kunvyi of Wukari, Manu Irimiya .D. Agbu, who said the monarch emerged following his selection by the four kingmakers guided by the Supreme Oracle.

Elated by the development, the newly installed monarch urged his subjects to throw their weights behind him to succeed in presiding over the affairs of the kingdom.

He urged those who contested for the stool along with him to join hands with him to make the kingdom a better place, vowing to carry everyone along.

Earlier, the state Governor, Arc. Darius Dickson Ishaku, who was represented by his Chief of Staff, Haruna Istifanus Gbana, admonished the new Aku to endeavour to work round the clock to herald the much-needed peace and unity in Jukun land.

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Distancing government from the selection process, he said the exercise was purely traditional.

Born on 24th March 1946, the new Aku holds Higher National Diploma (HND) in Forestry from the premier Federal College of Forestry Jos, Plateau State.

He joined the civil service in 1965 and retired in the year 2000 as Chief Forestry Superintendent after 35 years of meritorious service.

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