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Speakership: APC defends Gbajabiamila over conviction allegation

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The All Progressives Congress (APC) has defended its candidate for the Speakership position of 9th House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, over reports making the rounds that he was convicted by a Court in the United States of America.

The APC while urging Nigerians to ignore the reports, said they were sponsored, and describing the allegations as “phantom and infantile”.

It noted that the allegations had become reoccurring fabrication.

It recalled that the same baseless allegations were made against Gbajabiamila in the lead up to the 8th National Assembly speakership race but came to naught.

The party emphasised that Gbajabiamila had never been convicted for any crime in Nigeria and abroad.

“We urge Gbajabiamila and his vibrant campaign team to remain focused on their extensive county-wide consultation and engagements which has been well-received and endorsed across party lines.

“Ahead of the June 11 inauguration of the 9th National Assembly, we urge all APC federal lawmakers to rally around the candidatures of Sen. Ahmad Lawan, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila and all our candidates for the respective principal positions,” it said.

The party also commended Sen. Danjuma Goje for his decision to withdraw from the 9th Senate Presidency contest in support of the party’s endorsed candidate, Sen. Ahmad Lawan.

The commendation is contained in a statement issued Thursday in Abuja by Malam Lanre Issa-Onilu, the party’s National Publicity Secretary.

It also commended the fatherly role played by President Muhammadu Buhari in ensuring compliance with party decisions and directives.

According to the party, Goje has demonstrated himself as a reliable and committed party leader, good role model and elder statesman.

“We believe that Goje’s selfless actions typify APC’s progressive ideals and should be emulated by all party members to ensure unity, strength and supremacy of our great party.

“There is no doubt that the majority APC caucus is going into the incoming 9th National Assembly as a united house,” it said.

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We lack authority to deregister political parties – INEC

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The Independent National Electoral Commission said it lacked the constitutional power to deregister any of the existing 91 political parties in the country.

The INEC Federal Commissioner in charge of Nasarawa, Kogi and Kwara States, Malam Muhammed Haruna, made this known on Monday in Lokoja while declaring open a post-election review meeting on the last general elections.

Haruna said that the clamour by Nigerians for a reduction in the number of registered parties could only be done through an amendment of the Constitution.

He agreed that the provisions in the 1999 Constitution that state that parties must be national in outlook and have headquarters in Abuja had led to unexpected problems but explained that INEC was helpless.

The Commissioner advocated a consensus among stakeholders to resolve the issue, explaining that constitutional amendment was the only way out.

Haruna identified logistics as the major challenge the INEC encountered in the process of conducting the last general elections, saying that steps would be taken to prevent a re-occurrence.

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Lecturer queried over alleged sex scandal

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The management of Ekiti State University, Ado Ekiti led by the acting Vice-Chancellor, Prof Olubunmi Ajayi, on Friday issued a query to a lecturer of the institution, allegedly fingered in a sex-for-marks scandal.

Head, Directorate of Information, EKSU, Bode Olofinmuagun, said this in a statement in Ado Ekiti on Saturday, adding that the institution “would not condone any act of sexual harassment in the university.”

He also said, “The attention of the management of EKSU has been drawn to a video that has gone viral on an alleged sex scandal involving one of its lecturers.

“The video allegedly fingered one Dr O. O. Aduwo of the Department of Accounting.”

He added that the institution had “as such, issued a query to the concerned lecturer to defend himself against the allegation, as a first step in the spirit of due process.

“Thereafter, a panel of investigation would be constituted to get to the root of the matter, while the findings of the panel would be made public. The general public is hereby assured that management would continue to be transparent and would not allow such a matter that could smear its good image to be swept under the carpet.”

Students alleged that the lecturer went to a female student’s residence to have sex with her in exchange for marks, unknowingly for him that other students had laid in wait at the place to embarrass him.

According to some students who preferred anonymity, the lecturer was about to begin the “immoral act” when other students appeared, dragging him out and assaulted him.

A video that had gone viral about the alleged sex scandal showed the lecturer in towel, pleading for mercy from the students who mocked and tortured him, as he struggled to resist being drawn out of the room into the public glare.

But a student said on Saturday that the incident took place in the lecturer’s house, adding that it was “a set-up”, allegedly “to teach him some bitter lessons.”

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Global Warming: Anambra students, others protest against detrimental practices

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Students of different Schools in Anambra State in partnership with Live Mother and Child initiative and Mind Savers Youth Initiative and Nigeria Coalition of Eco-Social Research (NCEHR), yesterday, protested devastating effects of climate change in Nigeria, especially in the South east.

The students were drawn from Community Secondary School Enugwu-Agidi; SUSU College, Nkpor; Lighthouse Academy, Okija, Golden Star Secondary School, Amichi, as well as Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University Medical Student’s Association (COOUMSA), Awka, Anambra State.

The protesters highlighted several practices detrimental to the environment, which according to them, included: deforestation, poor waste management, use of fossil fuels that increase carbon footprint.

One of the protesters and member, Nigerian working group of Canadian Coalition for Global Health Research (NWG-CCGHR), Dr. Ngozi Joe-Ikechebelu, appealed to citizens to practice greener lifestyles in order to save the planet, just as she asked government to create and implement policies that would aid in the global fight against climate change.

Ikechebelu, who addressed journalists in Onitsha, expressed joy that Nigerian students were committed to reminding the government on the state of climate emergency in the country.

She said, “The protest taking place in different countries of the world is part of the global school students’ decision to demonstrate, through an international movement, called Friday For Future (FFF).

“In Nigeria, the FFF was organised by the NWG-CCGHR which comprised of Nigerian students at the University of Victoria (UVic) and British Columbia.”

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