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Saraki formally declares to run for president

Breaking: Saraki declares to run for president

By Anthony Ogbonna

Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki has officially declared to run for the president of Nigeria come 2019 election.

Saraki made his intention known during a dialogue with Youth and Young aspirants, held at Sheraton hotel, Abuja, on Thursday, august 30, 2018.

According to him, he possesses a blend of executive and legislative experience being a former governor of a state in Nigeria and now, the Senate President. Saraki said, as such, he has all it takes to “push for and implement reforms that will deliver real improvements in the daily lives of our people. I know what it takes to create jobs and grow the economy. I can make the tough decisions when it matters. I will spearhead a new agenda that can transform the lives of ordinary Nigerians in real terms.”

Saraki said it will not be business as usual because his government will, if elected as president, “be a dynamic government of action that will pursue the growth of Nigeria with doggedness, determination and conviction.”

Saraki also said that he will lead a result-driven administration that will set targets “with clear timelines to ensure that anticipated deliverables are met.”

Saraki said he will deliver on all promises driven by what is best for Nigerians.

The full speech reads thus:

“Let me say, once again, how wonderful it is to see so many talented and purposeful young people at this first edition of the Public Dialogue Series with Political Parties on Youth Candidacy and Party Primaries. Looking at you, I see future leaders who present themselves as capable and worthy to take on the mantle of leadership in this country, and this gladdens my heart.

From my interactions with many of you, and with your contemporaries across the country, I can see that we are blessed with a determined generation that stands ready to join with us to power a Nigerian renaissance. The quality of people I see here today affirms my belief that, indeed, you are Not Too Young To Run.

I deeply appreciate this opportunity to share some of my ideas about where we are as a nation, as well as the challenges before us as we approach the great decider that is the 2019 General Elections.

It is widely acknowledged that ours is a relatively ‘young’ country bursting with tremendous energy, ability and potential. More than 70 per cent of our population is under the age of 40. You are indeed the future of this country. Ordinarily, such a young population would be the envy of many Western countries that are faced with ageing populations, but the dire state of our affairs tarnishes the youthful advantage that we have.

Up and down our country today, Nigerians are crying out for succour. Many of our children are hungry. Many people are dying of avoidable or otherwise treatable diseases. Many have fallen below basic living standards, and are now among the 87 million that sealed Nigeria’s position as the country with the highest number of people in extreme poverty. Our young people lack opportunities. The necessary education facilities and system to equip them for the future simply do not exist. We are not creating the jobs needed to usefully engage them in order to grow our economy. And too often, the youth feel shut out, prevented from having any say in the direction of this nation.

The harsh conditions of extreme poverty faced by the people, fuels the state of insecurity all over the country. Hunger, lack of education and lack of opportunities push many Nigerians into criminal activities including terrorism. Many of our communities are paralysed with fear – due to incessant communal crises, kidnappings and other social ills, as well as the threat of terrorism. We are failing abysmally to tackle the problems of today and to prepare for the future.

Our economy is broken and is in need of urgent revival in order for Nigeria to grow. GDP growth rate has declined. Diversification remains an illusion. Unemployment is at an all-time high. Businesses are shutting down. Jobs are being lost in record numbers, and the capital needed to jumpstart our economy is going elsewhere.

Nigeria is perhaps more divided now than ever before. We are increasingly divided along regional, religious and ethnic lines. Nigerians are also divided by class, a festering gulf between the ‘Haves’ and the ‘Have-Nots’. The fault lines of this nation are widening to an alarming degree. We must do something fast, and we must be brave about it.

We must ensure the security of lives in Nigeria. As things stand now, no one is safe in this country. No one feels truly safe. We must restore the sanctity of the rule of law and strengthen democratic institutions in order to build a just, fair and equitable society for all. We must rebuild the trust of our people in government. We need a new generation of leaders that are competent, with the capability to rise to the challenges of the 21st century. We must pull this country back together and rebuild, block by block, with dedication and commitment.

You will agree with me that this is an urgent task that requires the concerted efforts of each and every one of us. If we look around today, what do we see? What is the condition of our citizens? Where are we as a nation? How are we perceived locally and internationally? Why are we not making the expected progress? Why are we not growing? There is no time to waste. The time is now, to come together to stimulate growth in Nigeria, especially in the national economy.

The choice we face in the forthcoming election is either to keep things as they are, or make a radical departure from the old ways. To find a better way of doing things or keep repeating the mistakes of the past. To fix the problems or keep compounding them.

It is with all these in mind, and taking account of the challenges that I have outlined, that I have decided to answer the call of teeming youth who have asked me to run for President. Accordingly, I hereby announce my intention to run for the office of President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in the coming General Elections in 2019 on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP). I do so with the firm conviction that I have what it takes to secure inclusive growth for Nigeria and Nigerians.

My Plan for Nigeria has inclusion in all aspects of the country’s affairs as a central pillar. Every citizen has the inalienable right to feel a sense of belonging, no matter their background or creed, or what part of the country they come from. No matter who you voted for or what your convictions are, government must work for you.

Your generation does not deserve to live in the poverty capital of the world. It is no longer an issue of how we got here, but how do we get out of this situation? I promise you that I will lead the fight and employ every God-given resource available to us in turning things around. I am determined to grow Nigeria out of poverty. We will stimulate the growth of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) as one of the ways of energising the economy and to create wealth for our people, especially the youth.

I want to see the youth play major roles at all levels, not only in government but also in the private sector and indeed in every area of Nigerian life. This will be a government driven by youthful energy, innovation and a pioneering entrepreneurial spirit. Nigerian youth will be given all the opportunities to realise their potential to the full within a national framework that guarantees inclusiveness. For youth who have ideas and capacity, we will make sure that there is funding for their ventures; and we shall build on the Made in Nigeria legislation as part of our job creation drive.

My plan is to secure Nigeria by redesigning our national security architecture, while adequately equipping our security agencies to fulfil their primary role of protecting lives and property.

I will address our infrastructural deficit through aggressive financing initiatives including mutually beneficial PPP arrangements, regular floating of bonds and other financial instruments, which will ensure stable, adequate and reliable funding to see to the completion of core projects especially road, rail and power.

My plan is to protect all Nigerians and defend their constitutional rights and freedoms. I will stand for and uphold at all times the principle of the rule of law, which is the bedrock of democratic governance.

Ours will not be a selective fight against corruption. The emphasis will be on strengthening institutions, with a particular focus on deterrence. We cannot afford to compromise our institutions with proxy wars against perceived political opponents. We see the fight against corruption as crucial to Nigeria’s economic development.

I offer leadership driven by empathy. Where leaders are responsive to the citizens. Where they know that government cares. We will not be indifferent or turn a blind eye to the real concerns of our people. Every single Nigerian life matters.

For me, the leadership we deserve is one that will be a source of pride to all Nigerians, one that will be respected and admired in Africa and around the world. It should be a leadership that can hold its own and stand tall anywhere in the world. That is the type of leadership I offer.

As a former two-term Governor and currently President of the Senate by the grace of God, I believe I possess a unique blend of executive and legislative experience to push for and implement reforms that will deliver real improvements in the daily lives of our people. I know what it takes to create jobs and grow the economy. I can make the tough decisions when it matters. I will spearhead a new agenda that can transform the lives of ordinary Nigerians in real terms.

Believe me when I say that it will not be business as usual. This will be a dynamic government of action that will pursue the growth of Nigeria with doggedness, determination and conviction. I will lead a result-driven administration. We shall set targets with clear timelines to ensure that anticipated deliverables are met. You can benchmark us and hold us accountable. In short, I assure you that I will deliver on all promises. What I envision is a new chapter in governance in this country. We will be driven by what is best for Nigerians.

I have deliberately chosen the opportunity of being here with you, my Number One constituency who I see as the future of our great country, to make my intention known. I believe the Nigerian youth are critical to rebuilding and growing the economy, and restoring our national pride.

I therefore ask you and all well-meaning Nigerians to join hands with me in this noble cause.

My brothers, My sisters, Let’s Grow Nigeria Together.

God bless you all.

God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria,” he concluded.

Credit : Vanguard

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Saraki won’t resign — Senators dare APC

Saraki won’t resign — Senators

Saraki
The Senators representing Bauchi Central and Kwara South respectively, Isa Hama Misau and Rafiu Ibrahim have warned their counterpart from Katsina South, Abu Ibrahim and his fellow travellers in the All Progressives Congress (APC) not to foment any trouble when the Senate resumes on September 25, as the Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki will never resign from the position.

Misau and Ibrahim, in a statement jointly signed by them in reaction to an interview granted by the Katsina Senator to the Cable online newspaper, stated that Abu Ibrahim and his colleagues will meet their match if they tried anything illegal even with all the deployment of security forces which they might have been assured of by the executive arm of government.

“It is obvious from the statements of Abu Ibrahim that he and his cohorts are not democrats. They do not believe in rule of law, the provisions of the constitution, the standing order of the Senate, parliamentary procedure and the due process.

“How will a supposed democrat be threatening disruption of peace in the parliament because his party lost members and lost its majority status? His statements showed why one of them led thugs to disrupt the proceeding of the Senate, steal the mace, the symbol of authority of the legislature, and yet there is no consequence. Both the mastermind and his thugs have been protected from being prosecuted. Now, Abu Ibrahim has given us an insight into what they are planning and we will be ready for them. He has also shown an indication of how he, as the chairman of the Police Affairs Committee, has been misusing the police against other Senators.

“APC should note that they are now the minority party. PDP have more members. When we resume, if they push us, we will move for a head count of members and change some of our principal officers to reflect party strength. Today, by the list paraded by APC themselves, they have only 48 Senators and PDP has 54, APGA has 2 and ADC has 2. There are two vacancies. That is the distribution in the Senate. Let them continue to deceive themselves.

“We will use our strength to defend the position of the present leadership of the Senate under Dr. Saraki and Senator Ike Ekweremadu. We will defend democracy and rule of law against the pretenders. We will show that every Senator represent different constituencies in our country.

“Our colleague from Katsina State has equally demonstrated that even though he has spent four terms in the legislature, he has not imbibed parliamentary ethos. Even his knowledge of the provisions of the law and the Senate rules is suspect. That is why he misrepresented the provisions of Rule 12 order 1, 2 and 3 of the Senate about the process of reconvening the Senate after it properly adjourned. By the provision, without all the leaders of the four parties initiating the reconvening of the Senate before the adjourned date, nothing can legally happen. Also without the consent of the Senate President, nothing can happen.

“We urge him and his colleagues to know that if they tried anything illegal and indecent, we will resist it through legal means. They saw an instance with the way our colleagues in the House of Representatives quickly gathered to foil their failed coup early this week.

“Abu Ibrahim and his cohorts have shown that they are desperate to win the 2019 elections at all cost by all means. We are surprised that this defection is making APC so uncomfortable that they are ready to bring the country down because some Senators left their party. We gave them all the opportunities to make amends from their destructive, non-inclusive and dictatorial ways. They did not take the chances and were behaving as if nobody matters. They are running a government by cabals, serving selfish interests and forgetting all the promises the party made to the people before being elected into office.

“The APC government has always demonstrated serious contempt for the legislature. That is why they have sent only a paltry 11 executive bills to the National Assembly in 38 months despite their promise of reform in various sectors of the country, The APC government came in 2015 and the first proposal they put forward was to have emergency powers in a democracy. Thank God we did not fall for their antics.

“We call on all Nigerians and the international community to take note of the threat by Abu Ibrahim and know that if there is any illegal move to reconvene the Senate or there is breakdown of law and order in the Senate, the man has leaked their plan. The APC cabal in the Senate should be held responsible. Nigerians and the global community should know the type of people in charge of Nigeria now and how they seek to desecrate and destroy democratic institutions at will”, Misau and Ibrahim stated.

Why I’m dumping APC – Saraki

Why I’m dumping APC – Saraki

Dr Bukola Saraki

The Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki has announced his resignation of membership of the ruling All Progressives Congress. Here is his press statement formally announcing the defection.

PRESS STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE, HIS EXCELLENCY, DR. ABUBAKAR BUKOLA SARAKI, CON, ON JULY 31, 2018.

I wish to inform Nigerians that, after extensive consultations, I have decided to take my leave of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

This is not a decision that I have made lightly. If anything at all, I have tarried for so long and did all that was humanly possible, even in the face of great provocation, ridicule and flagrant persecution, to give opportunity for peace, reconciliation and harmonious existence.

Perhaps, more significantly, I am mindful of the fact that I carry on my shoulder a great responsibility for thousands of my supporters, political associates and friends, who have trusted in my leadership and have attached their political fortunes to mine. However, it is after an extensive consultation with all the important stakeholders that we have come to this difficult but inevitable decision to pitch our political tent elsewhere; where we could enjoy greater sense of belonging and where the interests of the greatest number of our Nigerians would be best served.

While I take full responsibility for this decision, I will like to emphasise that it is a decision that has been inescapably imposed on me by certain elements and forces within the APC who have ensured that the minimum conditions for peace, cooperation, inclusion and a general sense of belonging did not exist.

They have done everything to ensure that the basic rules of party administration, which should promote harmonious relations among the various elements within the party were blatantly disregarded. All governance principles which were required for a healthy functioning of the party and the government were deliberately violated or undermined. And all entreaties for justice, equity and fairness as basic precondition for peace and unity, not only within the party, but also the country at large, were simply ignored, or employed as additional pretext for further exclusion.

The experience of my people and associates in the past three years is that they have suffered alienation and have been treated as outsiders in their own party. Thus, many have become disaffected and disenchanted. At the same time, opportunities to seek redress and correct these anomalies were deliberately blocked as a government-within-a-government had formed an impregnable wall and left in the cold, everyone else who was not recognized as “one of us”. This is why my people, like all self-respecting people would do, decided to seek accommodation elsewhere.

I have had the privilege to lead the Nigerian legislature in the past three years as the President of the Senate and the Chairman of the National Assembly. The framers of our constitution envisage a degree of benign tension among the three arms of government if the principle of checks and balances must continue to serve as the building block of our democracy. In my role as the head of the legislature, and a leader of the party, I have ensured that this necessary tension did not escalate at any time in such a way that it could encumber Executive function or correspondingly, undermine the independence of the legislature. Over the years, I have made great efforts in the overall interest of the country, and in spite of my personal predicament, to manage situations that would otherwise have resulted in unsavoury consequences for the government and the administration. My colleagues in the Senate will bear testimony to this.

However, what we have seen is a situation whereby every dissent from the legislature was framed as an affront on the executive or as part of an agenda to undermine the government itself. The populist notion of anti-corruption became a ready weapon for silencing any form of dissent and for framing even principled objection as “corruption fighting back”. Persistent onslaught against the legislature and open incitement of the people against their own representatives became a default argument in defence of any short-coming of the government in a manner that betrays all too easily, a certain contempt for the Constitution itself or even the democracy that it is meant to serve.

Unfortunately, the self-serving gulf that has been created between the leadership of the two critical arms of government based on distrust and mutual suspicion has made any form of constructive engagement impossible. Therefore, anything short of a slavish surrender in a way that reduces the legislature to a mere rubber stamp would not have been sufficient in procuring the kind of rapprochement that was desired in the interest of all. But I have no doubt in my mind, that to surrender this way is to be complicit in the subversion of the institution that remains the very bastion of our democracy. I am a democrat. And I believe that anyone who lays even the most basic claim to being a democrat will not accept peace on those terms; which seeks to compromise the very basis of our existence as the parliament of the people.

The recent weeks have witnessed a rather unusual attempts to engage with some of these most critical issues at stake. Unfortunately, the discord has been allowed to fester unaddressed for too long, with dire consequences for the ultimate objective of delivering the common good and achieving peace and unity in our country. Any hope of reconciliation at this point was therefore very slim indeed. Most of the horses had bolted from the stable.

The emergence of a new national party executives a few weeks ago held out some hopes, however slender. The new party chairman has swung into action and did his best alongside some of the Governors of APC and His Excellency, the Vice President. I thank them for all their great efforts to save the day and achieve reconciliation. Even though I thought these efforts were coming late in the day, but seeing the genuine commitment of these gentlemen, I began to think that perhaps it was still possible to reconsider the situation.

However, as I have realized all along, there are some others in the party leadership hierarchy, who did not think dialogue was the way forward and therefore chose to play the fifth columnists. These individuals went to work and ensured that they scuttled the great efforts and the good intentions of these aforementioned leaders of the party. Perhaps, had these divisive forces not thrown the cogs in the wheel at the last minutes, and in a manner that made it impossible to sustain any trust in the process, the story today would have been different.

For me, I leave all that behind me. Today, I start as I return to the party where I began my political journey, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

When we left the PDP to join the then nascent coalition of All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2014, we left in a quest for justice, equity and inclusion; the fundamental principles on which the PDP was originally built but which it had deviated from. We were attracted to the APC by its promise of change. We fought hard along with others and defeated the PDP.

In retrospect, it is now evident that the PDP has learnt more from its defeat than the APC has learnt from its victory. The PDP that we return to is now a party that has learnt its lessons the hard way and have realized that no member of the party should be taken for granted; a party that has realized that inclusion, justice and equity are basic precondition for peace; a party that has realized that never again can the people of Nigeria be taken for granted.

I am excited by the new efforts, which seeks to build the reborn PDP on the core principles of promoting democratic values; internal democracy; accountability; inclusion and national competitiveness; genuine commitment to restructuring and devolution of powers; and an abiding belief in zoning of political and elective offices as an inevitable strategy for managing our rich diversity as a people of one great indivisible nation called Nigeria.

What we have all agreed is that a deep commitment to these ideals were not only a demonstration of our patriotism but also a matter of enlightened self-interest, believing that our very survival as political elites of this country will depend on our ability to earn the trust of our people and in making them believe that, more than anything else, we are committed to serving the people.

What the experience of the last three years have taught us is that the most important task that we face as a country is how to reunite our people. Never before had so many people in so many parts of our country felt so alienated from their Nigerianness. Therefore, we understand that the greatest task before us is to reunite the county and give everyone a sense of belonging regardless of region or religion.

Every Nigerian must have an instinctive confidence that he or she will be treated with justice and equity in any part of the country regardless of the language they speak or how they worship God. This is the great task that trumps all. Unless we are able to achieve this, all other claim to progress no matter how defined, would remain unsustainable.

This is the task that I am committing myself to and I believe that it is in this PDP, that I will have the opportunity to play my part. It is my hope that the APC will respect the choice that I have made as my democratic right, and understand that even though we will now occupy a different political space, we do not necessarily become enemies unto one another.

Thank you.

Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, CON

President of the Senate

Melaye, Gemade, Kwankwaso, 12 other senators defect to PDP

Senate: Gemade, Melaye, Kwankwaso, 12 others defect to PDP

By Onyedi OJIABOR
15 senators including Barnabas Gemade, Dino Melaye and Dr. Lanre Tejuoso on Tuesday defected from the All Progressives Congress (APC) to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Their letter of defection was read by the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki ,during the Senate proceedings.

Others are:

Senator Mohammed Shaaba Lafiagi

Senator Muhammad Ubali Shitu

Senator Rafiu Ibrahim

Senator Isah Misau

Senator Suleiman Othman Hunkuyi

Senator Monsurat Sunmonu

Senator Abdulahi Danbaba

Senator Usman Bayero Nafada

Senator Sulaiman Mohammed Nazif

Senator Rabiu Kwankwaso

Read Also: Tension: Police mount surveillance, block Saraki’s convoy
Saraki later announced that Senator Abdullazeez Nyaku has also informed him of his defection from APC to PDP.

There was palpable tension in the Senate chamber as Saraki entered the place at 10.41 a.m.

Senate proceedings ongoing.

Budget Padding: Court Orders President Buhari To Prosecute Senators

Budget Padding: Court Orders President Buhari To Prosecute Senators
By Adelanwa Bamgboye, Lagos |

Honourable Abdulmumini Jibrin

A Federal High Court in Lagos has directed that President Muhammadu Buhari should without further delay order security and anti-corruption agencies to forward to him (Buhari) reports of their investigations into allegations of padding and stealing of some N481 billion from the 2016 budget by some principal officers of the National Assembly.
Justice Mohammed Idris also mandated the President to ensure the prosecution of lawmakers over their alleged involvement in the stealing of a sum to the tune of N481bn from the 2016 budget.
The Court in his judgment delivered on Monday specifically asked President Buhari to, “Direct the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN, and/or appropriate anti-corruption agencies to without delay commence prosecution of indicted lawmakers.”
Justice Idris handed down the order of mandamus in a suit instituted by Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP).
The court also ordered President Buhari to, “Direct the publication of the report of investigations by security and anti-corruption bodies into the alleged padding of the 2016 budget.”
Justice Idris in the action initiated against the President of Nigeria and the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, declared that in the exercise of his executive powers, President Buhari has a duty to ensure compliance with the provisions of article 22 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights.
The court further held that President Buhari is “expected to use his executive powers for the public good of Nigeria.”
In his declaration, the judge granted an order directing Buhari to, “Urgently halt alleged attempt by some principal officers of the National Assembly to steal N40 billion of the N100 billion allocated by his government as ‘zonal intervention’ in the 2017 budget.
“To closely monitor and scrutinize the spending of N131 billion (accrued from increased oil bench mark) allocated for additional non-constituency projects expenditure, to remove the possibility of corruption.”
Justice Idris equally held that, “SERAP, being a human rights non-governmental organization has sufficient interest in the way and manner public funds are being utilized in this country.”
Article 22 of the African Charter provides that, “All peoples shall have the right to their economic, social and cultural development with due regard to their freedom,” and that “States shall have the duty, individually or collectively, to ensure the exercise of the right to development.”
In reacting to the judgment, the Deputy Director of SERAP, Timothy Adewale argued that, “This judgment confirms the pervasive corruption in the budget process and the prevailing culture of impunity of our lawmakers as well as the failure of the authorities to uphold transparency and accountability in the entire budget process and implementation.
“The judgement is an important step towards reversing a culture of corruption in the budget process that has meant that many of our lawmakers see the budget more as a ‘meal ticket’ to look after themselves than a social contract to meet people’s needs and advance equity and development across the country.
“This is a crucial precedent that vindicates the right to a transparent and accountable budget process and affirms the budget as government’s most important economic policy document, which is central to the realization of all human rights including the rights to health, water, and education.
“SERAP will do everything within its power to secure the full and effective enforcement of this important judgment.”
It would be recalled that SERAP last year filed the suit after the organization said it received “credible information from multiple sources that the Department of State Services (DSS) and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) have completed investigations into the allegations of padding of the 2016 budget, completed their reports, and indicted some principal officers of the House of Representatives and the Senate, and that the accounts of some of the principal officers containing allegedly illicit funds have been frozen, and that the case files for the prosecution of those indicted were ready.”
The suit filed on SERAP’s behalf by its counsel, Mrs Joke Fekumo read in part: “Unless the principal officers indicted in the alleged padding of the 2016 budget are prosecuted and any stolen public funds recovered, the Federal Government will not be able to stop padding of future budgets.
“Alleged corruption in the budget process will not just melt away or simply evaporate without addressing the fundamental issue of impunity of perpetrators.
“Addressing alleged corruption in the budget process by pursuing prosecution of indicted principal officers of the National Assembly will provide an important opportunity for the Federal Government to reignite the fight against corruption and fulfil a cardinal campaign promise, to show that the Federal Government works on behalf of the many, and not the few, as well as jumpstart economic activities and break the back of the recession.
“Publishing the report of the investigation of the alleged padding of the 2016 budget, and prosecuting suspected perpetrators are absolutely important to avoid another padding, which the Federal Government can ill afford.
“The allegations of crime of budget padding against the indicted principal officers of the National Assembly is a gross deprivation of the good people of Nigeria’s legitimate wealth and natural resources.
“We respectfully urge your Lordship to hold that the citizens of Nigeria have been deprived of their natural wealth and the indicted principal members be prosecuted by the Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation.

Culled from Daily Trust

BREAKING: Another Nigerian Senator, Bukar Mustapha, is dead

BREAKING: Another Nigerian Senator, Bukar Mustapha, is dead

Senator Bukar Mustapha

Nasir Ayitogo
Bukar Mustapha, the senator representing Katsina North, is dead.

Mr. Mustapha was President Muhammadu Buhari’s senator as he represented the president’s senatorial district.


He died after a brief illness on Wednesday, PREMIUM TIMES learnt.

The News Agency of Nigeria quotes Mr. Bukar’s elder brother, Umar Bukar, as confirming the news.

Mr. Bukar’s death is coming less than a week after the deputy majority leader of the House of Representatives, Umar Jibril, died after a protracted illness.

It also came about two weeks after another senator, Ali Wakili, passed away.


Editor’s Note: The News Agency of Nigeria has clarified that Mr. Bukar’s death was confirmed by his elder brother.

Umeh sworn in as senator

Umeh takes oath of office, calls for implementation of Confab report

Victor Umeh

Former National Chairman, All Progressives Grand Alliance(APGA) Chief Victor Umeh on Thursday took oath of office as Senator representing Anambra Central Senatorial District.

The oath of office was administered on him by the President of the Senate Dr Bukola Saraki in Abuja.

The Senatorial District had been without representation in the last two years.

Umeh, while briefing journalists after taking oath of office, called for the implementation of the 2014 National Conference Report, saying that the report was comprehensive enough to chat a new course for a new Nigeria.

He noted that the report addressed various issues currently causing agitation in the country, including the issue of restructuring which had generated a lot of debate and controversies in the polity.

The politician explained that restructuring was not tantamount to disintegration of the corporate entity called Nigeria, as many people had insinuated but a means of rearranging certain anomalies in the system, so as to end or reduce agitations.

He said that Nigeria could only prosper when all citizens were given equal opportunities and treatment in the affairs of the nation, pointing out that those opposed to restructuring did not want Nigeria to make progress.

The Anambra Central Senator lamented that his constituents lost so much fortunes as a result of the vacuum that existed in the Senate during the period of political tussle amongst the contestants to the seat.

He, however, said that he was comforted by the fact that justice was done in the protracted law suit, saying that it was better that he got justice, even though it took a long time to happen.

The lawmaker noted that the only way democracy could survive in the country was for everybody to obey the Rule of Law, stressing that those circumventing the Rule of law were the ones dragging the country backward and always brought problems to the people.(NAN)