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Peter Obi’s Supporters Write INEC, Seek Extension Of PVC’s Registration Deadline

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VIDEO: What Peter Obi Said In Port Harcourt About Other Presidential Candidates

The Coalition for Peter Obi (CPO), an umbrella group for all Peter Obi support groups has written an open letter to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) stating a list of demands that would prevent the disenfranchisement of over 30 million Nigerians who are eligible to vote.

The coalition in a statement by its Media Director, Chief Tochukwu Ezeoke, says it would embark on a civil protest if INEC fails to not only extend the deadline for permanent voters card registration and register new centres but, make an undertaking that all Permanent Voter’s Card (PVC) must be ready at least 60 days before the date of the election.

The letter reads: “An Open Letter from the Coalition for Peter Obi (CPO) to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), concerning INDIRECT disenfranchisement of about 30m would-be Voters in the 2023 General Election.

“The Coalition for Peter Obi (CPO) is an umbrella organisation made up of various Peter Obi Support Groups with membership drawn from all walks of life, age groups, gender and ethnic nationalities in Nigeria and beyond. Our members are spread across the world and have chosen to synergize efforts and resources towards the single objective of entrenching good governance in Nigeria through a Peter Obi Presidency and continue with our mandates thereafter.

“The commission is aware that it was established in accordance with section 153(f) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended). The Core functions of the commission as stipulated in Part I of the Third Schedule to the 1999 Constitution are as listed below with particular emphasis to Subsection 5 where our concerns are captured:

“1. …
2. …..
3. ……
4. ……
5. Arrange and conduct the registration of persons qualified to vote as well as prepare, maintain and revise the Register of Voters for the purpose of any election under this Constitution.

 READ ALSO: INEC Extends Deadline For Political Parties’ Primaries

“Every eligible citizen has the right to register and vote in democratic elections. However, the right to vote cannot be effectively exercised without a place to register, and Permanent Voter’s Card (PVC) ready for collection before the date of the election”

“Citizens’ right to take part in the election process must not be marred by huddles designed to disenfranchise them.”

The group went further to note that, “the percentage of eligible citizens that had registered and taken part in the previous election had hovered around 35%. We believe this number is very poor by every standard measurable and has made a concerted effort to ensure a sharp increase in the numbers through massive nationwide awareness and mobilisation campaigns as evidenced in the surge by new electorate recently.

“It is therefore sad, disappointing and disheartening that the commission is directly and/or indirectly disenfranchising almost 30m Nigerians via unacceptable conduct that in our opinion is clearly designed to limit the percentage of the population willing to take part in the 2023 election or a suggestion that this is the intention of the commission.

“Our members have complained bitterly and consistently of their inability to go through the continuous registration process as either there are insufficient staff members and/or computers devices at designated registration centres or insufficient registration centres due to the sudden surge and desire for the younger demographic to register and take part in the 2023 Election. We understand that some of our members had to take days off from their respective daily endeavours to register but sadly and disappointedly most did not succeed.

“It’s inexplicable and unacceptable that the commission cannot increase registration devices, staff and registration points for the 2023 election when it became obvious and demonstrably so that there was a huge surge of citizens willing to register for the 2023 Election.

“The core function of the commission is to conduct free and fair elections and it’s in the interest of the country that if not all, a reasonable percentage of the population take part in the election process. However where there is more than sufficient evidence to suggest otherwise and in particular pointing towards the commission’s tacitly disenfranchisement of citizens from the election process, we have the mandate of our members worldwide to embark on a CIVIL/PEACEFUL PROTEST if the commission fails to do the following:
1. Extend the deadline for registration until the end of September 2022
2. Increase Registration Centres, Staff and indeed be flexible to plug into locations provided by citizens in close proximity to their respective places of daily endeavours
3. An undertaking that all Permanent Voter’s Card (PVC) must be ready at least 60 days before the date of the election
4. There must be a platform where citizens can register exploitative and predatorial behaviour by the commission’s staff at registration centres for swift action.

READ ALSO: Why You Might Not Be Allowed To Vote In 2023 – INEC

“We need not remind the commission that a lot is at stake for the citizens in the 2023 election and as a matter of fact, some have suggested that the 2023 election presents a make or mar option for citizens with regard to trusting the electoral process. The integrity of the commission is clearly at stake and we hope that she fixes things up urgently. We expect the commission to live up to expectations and international best standards so that history can be favourable to her independence and proactiveness as well as deepen democracy and restoration of citizens’ trust in the democratic process.

“We believe that the commission is interested in leaving a record of quality credible service in the 2023 general election”.

 

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Tinubu Approves N70,000 Minimum Wage

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BREAKING: Dogara, Babachir Lead Northern Christians Against Tinubu's Muslim-Muslim Ticket

By John Michael Ojo

The Federal Government on Thursday, pegged the new national minimum wage at N70,000.

This was made known by Mr Bayo Onanuga, a Special Adviser to President Bola Tinubu on Information and Strategy, in a statement posted on X, formerly known as Twitter.

“President Bola Tinubu has approved N70,000 minimum wage for Nigerian workers with promise to review the national minimum wage law every three years.

“President Tinubu also promised to find ways to assist the private sector and the sub-nationals to pay the minimum wage.

“President Tinubu announced the decisions at the meeting held with leaders of TUC and NLC on Thursday in Abuja, the second time the parties met in 7 days,” the statement read.

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Olaopa Urges Youths To Shun Japa Syndrome, Prepare For Leadership

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Prof. Tunji Olaopa flanked by Hon Abike Dabiri (left )and Prof. Oladapo Afolabi , former Head of Service of the Federation ( right) at the event on Thursday.

The Chairman of the Federal Civil Service Commission, Prof. Tunji Olaopa, has urged youths to prepare for leadership positions early in life instead of travelling overseas to seek opportunities, a development that is popularly known as the Japa syndrome.

The seasoned bureaucrat and former federal permanent secretary said that opportunities abound for youths but that they could only access them when they begin early .

According to Olaopa who spoke on Thursday during the 2023/2024 graduation of KIA Lakeside Academy in Abuja, these opportunities will elude the youths if they opt to go and wander on the streets of foreign countries. He said : ” In the civil service I am very familiar with, people grow old and retire every day. We need youths to fill such vacancies that the old people leave behind . If all the youths go abroad to be doing menial jobs, do we go to Ghana and other neighbouring countries to employ their youths?

Prof. Tunji Olaopa and Prof. Oladapo Afolabi, former Head of Service of the Federation at the event.

He said that under his leadership of the Federal Civil Service, there is so  much hope for youths to access federal jobs. He said he had decided to maintain a policy of transparency and equity in making jobs in the civil service available for all eligible Nigerian youths through open advertisement.

He said in the area of political leadership, the older generation could not keep on dominating the sector. He said that the youths would be need to replace the old political leaders as they quit the scene.

According to him, the ability to prepare early for leadership goes hand in hand with a clear vision. He said nobody could prepare for anything if there is no clear vision of where they are going or what they want.

He said people who reach great heights in life always have a clear vision of where they are going early in life and they work towards it. He gave the example of former United States President Bill Clinton who as a youth had a clear vision of being his nation’s leader.

According to Olaopa, past and current leaders in Nigeria have had early in their youths clear visions of what they want in life. He said it was this clear visions early in life that made them trailblazers in different areas of life. In politics he cited Chief Obafemi Awolowo , Dr Nnamdi Azikiwe and others. He said that these were trailblazers in their youth. He said in business, young people have become trailblazers.

He said that because of the opportunities the current world offers, youths do not need to become old people before reaching great heights in life. According to him, youths have become trailblazers in technology . He mentioned the examples of Zuckerberg of Facebook, Elon Musk and a younger Bill Gates.

Talking about breaking the glass ceiling, Olaopa said that no gender barrier should stop anyone from reaching the summit of life. He said many women in the past and the present have been trailblazers. He mentioned Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti. Dora Akunyili,l and Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala. He said unlike in the past , many bank CEOs in Nigeria are currently women.

However, Olaopa said that nobody could be a trailblazer without preparation. He said this preparation comes in the form of education. He quoted Nelson Mandela who once observed that “Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world.” He said if in the past people we regard as great today could get education despite the huge barriers they were faced with, youths of today have no excuse. He said Awolowo was faced with a huge educational disadvantage which he overcame by studying at home . He said Azikiwe had to find his way overseas where he suffered to educate himself. According to him, one of the greatest lawyers today in Nigeria is Chief Afe Babalola. He said Babalola overcame his challenges by studying at home and that today he owns one of the best universities in the country.

According to him, youths who lack the opportunity of going to formal university classrooms can avail themselves of the opportunities offered by the open university system that the Federal Government supports .

He said that in fact President Bola Tinubu has demonstrated his interest in the education of the less-privileged through his government’s Student loan scheme. He said that youths who desire to acquire university education but have no sponsors can use that scheme.

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Tinubu Appoints Walson-Jack Head Of Service As Yemi-Esan Retires

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Walson-Jack

As the current Head of Service Folasade Yemi-Esan, CFR, is due to retire on August 13, 2024, President Bola Tinubu has approved her replacement. She is Mrs. Didi Esther Walson-Jack.

Mrs. Walson-Jack was appointed as Federal Permanent Secretary in 2017 and has served in several Ministries.

While thanking Yemi-Esan  for her stewardship, President Tinubu tasked the incoming Head of Service to discharge her duties with innovative flair, integrity, and stringent adherence to the extant rules and regulations of the Civil Service of the Federation.

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