I Still Have Faith In PDP – Sen. Ibrahim Mantu

In the face of stories making the rounds that some top
Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, notches may be heading
for other parties, former Deputy President of the Senate,
Ibrahim Mantu, says his fortunes are better guaranteed
in the now opposition PDP, despite the challenges being
faced by the party. He spoke exclusively to nationalTRAIL’s
Jonathan Ipaa in Abuja


Senator, what
is the motive
behind this
summit in the first place?
Well, I am a politician
who has benefitted from
democracy, and all its
processes in recent time,
and I would love to bequeath
its dividends to the next
generation in a way that
providence will remember
me. Like other politicians of
my contemporaries, I wish
to be counted among those
who contribute towards the
strengthening of stronger
democratic institutions to
the next generation, so that
even the unborn, so that
what we will have on ground
in Nigeria will be in line
with what its obtainable in
the advanced nations like;
the United States, United
Kingdom, France, etc.
To answer your question,
the ideal behind the summit
therefore, is to strengthen
our democracy, make
it functional, stronger,
transparent and accountable
to the people including;
you the press. We want to
bequeath a democracy that
in the hands of the people
through their truly elected
leaders, and strengthen its
institutions for the next
As you are aware, the
annual national political
summit was declared
open by the President and
Commander In Chief,
President Muhammadu
Buhari, who was represented
by his vice, Prof. Yemi
Osibanjo, in attendance were
also the Senate President,
Senator Bukola Sarki, the
Speaker of the House of
Representatives, Rt Hon.
Yakubu Dogara, who also
presented key note addresses.
This summit is our
own modest contribution
to the effort of other key
stakeholders in strengthening
our democracy. You can see
that it attracted so many
dignitaries, both local and
international across political
party leanings. The former
Interim Leader of Liberian
government, Prof. Amos
Sawyer, the Mayor of New
York, Nigerian top officials,
organised labour, civil
society groups, the media,
every stakeholder, and you.
Who is actually sponsoring
this summit, and how much
does it cost the taxpayer?
We members, participants
all put our naira and kobo to
hold the summit. The Save
Nigeria Group, Africa, is
the platform, and if you can
recall, it is a well known body
accepted by the democratic
world, and Nigeria recognises
it. This is the platform under
which we came here, and not
the taxpayers’ money.
So it is not true that the
APC government is behind
this summit?
Not correct, I am not
aware of any, because we
are all involved. I am of the
opposition PDP, Ghali Na’aba
is a board member of the
ruling APC, we have Mrs
Josephine Anenih, Senator
Hangar, Senator Adeyeye,
ex ministers, lawmakers, the
organised labour, the civil
society, and the mass media,
But for those familiar with
your style of politics; Mantu
may be on his way to the
APC: What about this hot
story that the whole summit
is aim at providing a platform
for you to defect to the APC
like your contemporaries?
Kai! That is the Nigerian
press for you!! God forbid!
That is not why we are
here my brother; I have
no reason to leave PDP as
being speculated, if at all and
don’t forget, this summit as
I said earlier, is not about
PDP or APC. It’s about the
strengthening of democracy
in Nigeria. You know we
are the giant of Africa, and
most of the countries in
sub Sahara, look unto us for
example, so we have to get it
right for them to follow.
As for your question, I am
a strong member of the PDP,
and like other stakeholders
you see here, we have like
minds, but defection is not
the issue on our table as far
as the summit is concern.
How can I defect from a
party that made me, and for
what reason? Why would
anyone think I would leave
PDP for who and why?
May be for the fear of
being probed and witch hunt
like the fears of most PDP
leaders who have said, Is
it not safer to join the APC
and avert being chased like
some of your colleagues in
the opposition camp under
whatever guise?
I don’t know. I have not
given it a thought yet. I have
no further comment on this
please. Let me tell you, I am
still in PDP, and I have no
reason, or plan to defect to
any political party.
Rather than raise
imaginary questions outside
this summit, let’s dwell much
of this session on some of our
declaration and the frame
work of action for strategic
partnership and corporation
of stakeholders for political
development in Nigeria
which is what I am here for.
Okay, what was the
agenda like, and how will it
benefit the common man on
the street?
We, the stakeholders in
Nigeria’s electoral democracy
comprising leaders, political
parties, elders statesmen, civil
societies and representatives
of the entire spectrum of
Nigerian society, assembled
in Abuja for the inaugural
national political summit
on the theme 2015 General
Elections: Consolidating
the Gains and Building
Positive political culture
for sustenance democracy
in Nigeria organised by the
Save Democracy Group
Africa and other partnering
organisations, are convinced
that the positive attributes
of Nigeria’s 2015 elections
including peaceful conduct
acceptance of defeat by an
incumbent president, the
alternation of power at
the national level, and the
sustenance fight against
insurgency demonstrate
Nigeria’s leadership role in
democratic governance,
and the entrenchment of
democratic cultures and
values in the West African
sub region.
We underscored the
disturbing reality of politics
of attrition and the inability
of politicians including
us here, to overcome the
bitterness of elections and
rise over partisan divide to
promote national unity and
It is disturbing and
alarming that insurgency
has continue to threaten
our unity and stability in
spite our continue resolve
for peace and unity. We have
noted with great concern that
outstanding issues of under
representation by the youth,
women groups and the
vulnerable in governance, are
still key, and these are some
of the areas we debated at this
How are we sure that the
outcome of this summit
would not go the same way
many others have gone, and
What is the political will, for
instance; this declaration
will it get the National
Assembly backpacking?
Don’t forget that I was a
Deputy Senate President
and Ghali Na’aba was the
Speaker of the House of
Representatives. We still
enjoy respect, and if possible
patronage of the lawmakers.
We are still working together,
and I can tell you, the
outcome won’t be the same. It
would receive the light of the
legislators and the executive
as far as good governance is
We noted with great
concern that outstanding
issues in the reform of the
electoral process as contained
in the report of the Justice
Uwais Electoral Reform
Committee, and the relevant
recommendations of the
2014 National Conference
are yet to be incorporated
into the Amendment of
the Constitution and the
Electoral Act 2010 (as
amended), and we are
praying that the ongoing
Constitution Review process
by the National Assembly will
ensure its logical passage.
But you were the head of
that committee during your
days. What caused the delay
up to this time?
Well, its dynamics and
priority is tie to the demands
of the government of the day.
For instance, the demand
for states creation, resource
control, increase in elective
and appointive positions for
women, etc, keep growing
in every government, and
this democracy, you can’t
stop interest groups from
agitating for their rights.
We are persuaded that
the civil societies are
representatives of the
people, and communities
have important role to play
in the promotion of the
democratic process which
include election observation
and transparent use and
management of public
What are the parameters
for attaining all these
set goals, are you sure
Muhammadu Buhari led
APC government will key
into this PDP dominated
political summit agenda?
Well, it’s not about
individuals, it is about
Nigeria and democratic
institutions. The
inadequacies of the Nigerian
educational system which
cannot empower the youth
to engage in self employment
through entrepreneurial and
technical skills in addition
to the minimal role in the
politics and decision making
positions have constrained
opportunities for all round
development of the youth
We like any other citizen
are dissatisfied that the
absence of common values,
uniform standards and
code of conduct for elected
local government officials
have continued to diminish
the performance of local
governance across the nation,
as well as their funding, etc.
It is dismaying by the
continuous delay in the
dispensation of justice and
inconsistencies in their
judgments among others,
and we all frowned at the
incessant use of caretaker
committee by state governors
to govern the affairs of the
grassroots governments.
But the cry has been
narrowed to your party the
PDP for those 16 wasteful
years. Do you share this
blame at the summit?
Gone are the days of
campaigns and sentiments,
we must move forward and
strengthen our institutions.
We challenge stakeholders
across board to make
concerted efforts to revert
to the positive ideals of its
founders which include the
fight against corruption, in
fact, a corrupt free democratic
system in which leaders and
citizens commit themselves
to the values and cultures of
democracy such as free, fair
and credible election, strong
and internal political parties
with respect for internal
democracy and transparent
use of state resources for the
development and welfare of
What were the resolves
and the goodwill expected?
The summit under the Save
Democracy Group, Africa,
Nigerian chapter, has agreed
to strengthen the legislature
as the pillar of democratic
governance to enable it
continue to play its role of
checkmating the excesses
of the executive branch,
protecting constitutional
limits of terms of office,
passage of high impact
legislation, and carry out
investigations that expose
corruption and strengthen
institutions and mechanism
for public accountability.
The summit tasked
stakeholders of the political
class, and the political
leadership to eschew
politics of bitterness that
characterises elections, and
work in harmony with other
stakeholders to strengthen
the bonds of national unity
and focus on national interest.
The conference called on the
legislative arm of government
at all levels to urgently carry
out the amendment of
relevant sections of the 1999
Constitution (as Amended)
and the Electoral Act to
improve the electoral process.
The stakeholders demand
that the government must
end the culture of impunity,
tyranny, witch hunt, and
observe the basic tenets of the
rule of law in the concerted
war on corruption and
ensure that monies recovered
by courts of appropriate
jurisdictions are used for the
development and welfare of
Nigerian citizens.
We also charged the
federal government, and
those at the states and
local levels to undertake
a comprehensive reform
of the nation’s educational
curriculum to make
Nigerian youth employable,
and accommodate
entrepreneurial training and
skill acquisition to reduce
dependencies on white collar
employment as it is today.
Save Democracy Group
is calling on the judiciary
to recognise the import of
the Maxim, Justice delayed
is justice denied, and the
need for consistency in their
We affirm that Save
Democracy Group, Africa
be made a platform for the
operationalisation of the
resolutions of the Abuja
Peace Accord.
What is the framework for
achieving this?
The framework of action
for strategic partnership and
corporation of stakeholders
for political development
in Nigeria detailed the
responsibilities of individual
stakeholders towards the
realisation of the declaration.
Where we are now, where we
want to be, and how to get there
from here, the benchmarks
that will help mobilise for
effective monitoring and
oversight necessary for
factual assessment when we
return for the 2017 edition of
our summit

Lassa Fever: Emergency National Council On Health Strategise

The recent outbreak of Lassa fever obviously exposed further the poor health care system in Nigeria. It specifically told the world that Nigeria’s disease surveillance and control is still backwards. It also exposed the inefficiency of the nation’s Primary Health Care system. Above all the Lassa fever Outbreak which seems to have gotten out of hand is also sending the signal that Nigeria managed to contain Ebola not because all human and financial resources were made available.
The Nigerian Government called for an Emergency session of the National Council on Health (NCH) on Lassa Fever Outbreak, the same way the country did when the first index case of Ebola was reported.
The night long meeting in September 2014 had all state Governors making promises to boost its disease surveillance and control system then, many of those pledges were not fulfilled and thus the seemingly uncontrollable lassa Fever deaths.
It could also be recalled that the then administration made financial commitments for construction of quarantine centers and ambulance systems available in states. There were alleged reports that some of those funds were not accounted for.
Following the outbreak of Lassa fever which started since August 2015, and were not reported until the time the disease spread beyond control, the Federal ministry of health called for emergency national Council on Health meeting which held at the Rotunda Hall, Ministry of Foreign Affairs Building, Abuja, FCT on 19th January, 2016. The National Council on Health is the highest advisory body on health in Nigeria.
The Emergency meeting was convened by the Honourable Minister of Health Professor Isaac Adewole to lay the foundation for a Multi-Sectoral Response to the Lassa Fever Outbreak as a matter of urgency.
The specific objectives of the Emergency meeting were presented to Council by the Honourable Minister of State for Health and included the need to facilitate discussion on the control of the on-going Lassa fever outbreak, development of strategies for the prevention and management of outbreaks; operationalisation of integrated management of outbreaks and emergencies at the Federal, State and LGA levels; and inauguration of the Lassa fever eradication committee.
The health Minister made a presentation called “Laying the Foundation for a Multi-Sectoral Response to Lassa Fever”. The presentation elucidated the Multi-Sectoral Response Strategy for the control of Lassa Fever and other similar milar diseases. He called on all the States to strengthen their surveillance systems, report all cases and collaborate with the Federal Ministry of Health in the successful implementation of the Multi-Sectoral Response Strategy.
The Council also received a presentation on Epidemiological Situation of the current Lassa Fever Outbreak in Nigeria including available Response Infrastructure/Resource requirements by Prof. Abdulaslami Nasidi, National Coordinator/CEO, NCDC; updates from Lassa Fever affected states who detailed the progression of the outbreak(s) in their states and current efforts to contain and prevent further spread of the disease and reassure the affected Communities; as well as updates from CMDs/MDs of Federal Tertiary Health Institutions located within the affected States on their response and high index of suspicion towards all cases coming to their institutions, their management of confirmed cases, and measures being implemented to prevent nosocomial spread within their facilities as well as their community outreach efforts.
the efforts of the Federal Ministry of Health, its Agencies and Parastatals under the leadership of the Honourable Minister of Health as well as the efforts of all States including non-affected States who are actively strengthening their surveillance systems, awareness and health programme campaigns were recognized . But what was lacking was indebt feedback from the states on disease control and emergency response after the Ebola experience in Nigeria.
The NCH participants however said Ebola, was different from Lassa Fever which they said is treatable if detected early and there are adequate treatment centres spread across the country.
They were optimistic that the virus would be contained as they reassured the Public on the adequacy of the response to the outbreak and urged the Public, Community and Religious leaders to cooperate with the Health Agencies in their States to ensure prompt reporting of any suspected case.
The NCH comprises of the State Commissioners for Health of the 36 States, the Secretary of Health & Human Services Secretariat FCT, with the Honourable Minister of Health as the Chairman of the Council. The Emergency Meeting of the National Council on Health was chaired by the Honourable Minister of Health, Professor Isaac F. Adewole.
A total of 418 delegates participated from the Ministry, Departments and Agencies of the Federal Ministry of Health including Chief Medical Directors/Medical Directors of Federal Tertiary Health Institutions, State Ministries of Health and the Health & Human Services Secretariat of the Federal Capital Territory Administration, Abuja. Others in attendance were representatives of key Federal Ministries such as Agriculture, Education, Environment and Information; Also in attendance were Development Partners drawn from WHO, UNICEF, UNFPA, WAHO, CDC, PATHS2, DFID, BMGF, HERFON, AFENET, Higher Commissioner of Canada, Innovative Vaccines, and USAID; as well as delegates from the Health Regulatory Bodies, Professional associations, the Tri-Services of the Nigerian Military and Para-

Wife Of President Becomes TB Ambassador

Aisha-BuhariThe STOP TB Partnership Nigeria, an affiliate of the Global Stop TB partnership, Geneva, has announced the acceptance of the wife of President Muhammadu Buhari, Hajiya Aisha Mohammadu Buhari to champion the eradication of TB in Nigeria and globally.
Chairman of the Partnership, Prof. Lovett Lawson, who stated this in a press briefing in the Institute of Human Virology Nigeria (IHVN) in Abuja, said that her nomination was in recognition of her passion to promote the wellbeing of women and children in Nigeria.
“We believe that the leadership of her Excellency in TB control will significantly augment the efforts aimed at controlling the spread of the disease amongst adults and children and improve the engagement and support of key stakeholders from public and private sectors to TB control in Nigeria and ensure a TB-free future for our children,” he said.
According to Prof. Lawson, Nigeria has the highest number of TB cases in Africa with approximately 600,000 people becoming infected with TB and the STOP TB Partnership Nigeria is a multi-stakeholder partnership of government and non-governmental organizations, private sector, development partners amongst others dedicated to ending the scourge of TB in the country.
Representative of World Health Organization, Dr. Ayodele Awe, lamented that the situation in which only 15% of the TB cases in the country are being detected. He noted that only about 100,000 out of 600,000 cases of TB are being detected though the disease is a number one killer of Nigerians. He stated that TB is a curable disease and free treatment is available for the disease.
Beyond TB, Drug Resistant TB (DR-TB) is also a challenge because it is more difficult to treat and requires more expensive medications. However, it is being treated in the country according to IHVN representative in the STOP TB Partnership, Mr. DeboOlateju.
“With support from the Global Fund and other partners, IHVN has treated 1,334 patients for DR-TB since 2011 and is carrying out initiation of DR-TB treatment in the community in 24 states in the country,” he said.

Benue South Rerun: Let the Will of My People Prevail – Mark


By Lateef Bamgbose

david-markImmediate past President of the Senate, Senator David Mark has for umpteenth time stated that the forthcoming re-run election in Benue South is not a contest between the Idoma people and their neighbours but solely a decision of the former to decide her destiny.
“Make no mistake about this. The rerun election is purely the affairs of Benue South people. They will ultimately determine who should represent them. Any outsider showing or attempting to influence the outcome is merely an interloper, intruder and would ultimately be an exercise in futility, Mark told Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) stakeholders who visited him in Abuja.
He said he has been energized and encouraged by the uncommon show of solidarity and support to go for the rerun election from his constituents, well meaning Nigerians and the PDP stressing that “democracy will be strengthened and serve the purpose if peoples’ wish are held sacrosanct .”
Mark said he was pleased that his constituents have seen good reasons why he should return to the Senate because they have taken pains to verify projects and appointments he has attracted to the constituency as a Senator of the Federal Republic.
He, therefore, told his people to remain law abiding and show good conduct pre- election, during and after the election no matter the level of provocation.
” With God on our side and the growing support, we will win the election convincingly. What I will not accept is for any outside interest or outsider to determine the outcome of the election”, he added.
In his remark, the PDP Chairman in Benue state, Dr. Emmanuel Agbo noted that the defection of the likes of former Deputy Governor, Steve Lawani, Jerry Agada , Sam Ode and Mike Onoja is not a threat to the party in Benue South because they represented a vocal minority and certainly not the majority of thepeople.
Agbo stated: “the decamped persons actually removed the burden from us. They were the problems of the party. They were the ones who perpetrated anti-party activities. They betrayed the party in the past. They have eventually demonstrated their unstable nature. They would still betray the All Progressives Congress (APC).
He added:” I can tell you without any fear of contradiction that the people are with us. Our mission is genuine and God almighty will give us victory.

Political Face Off: Community Petitions IG Over Use of Police

By Lateef BANGBOSHE, Abuja

Accuses Borno Dep. Gov Of Fomenting Religious Disharmony

The Marama Community in Hawul Local Government area of Borno state has petitioned the Inspector general of Police, Sunday Arase over the use of some policemen from the Borno state Command for arbitrary arrest of youths and Church officials in a political face off between the community and deputy Governor of the state, Usman Mamman Durkwa.
In a four page petition signed by Aaron Hamman Mbaya and David Ishaku Mshelia, on behalf of Marama Youths Association, the community alleged that the Deputy Governor has been using the police to randomly abduct people from the community, including Church leaders in furtherance of his political vendetta on the community following a clash between his thugs and some youths in the town, in the build up to last year’s general elections.
Narrating the genesis of the political clash with the Deputy Governor, the petition stated amongst other things that, sequel to the insecurity in the north East, Maram community, like others organized themselves into volunteer groups to check possible infiltration of their area by Boko Haram. But on the eve of the last Presidential elect ions when all rallies had stopped, Usman Durkwa, then a commissioner in Borno State invaded the community with thugs shouting slogans reminiscent of Boko Haram.
According to them, the community was thrown into initial confusion, as people though it was a Boko Haram attack, but when they realized later that the then commissioner was the one personally leading a political rally, with his thugs attacking everybody in sight, because they perceived that the town was not supportive of his party, people mobilized to resist the invading thugs, resulting into a free for all fight.
They said the community was angered with the chants similar to that of Boko Haram, the hacking down of a nine year old by Usman Durkwa’s thugs, and the pulling down of opposition posters and shades, and decided to confront the invading thugs, all of whom were brought in from another community; resulting into the clash.
In the ensuing milieu, they stated, Durkwa seemed to have realized the mistake of allowing his thugs to be violent, especially as he is from another community, which was not attacked by his own thugs; and fled to his mistresses’ house, where the youths pursued him.
The petition further stated that, on catching up with him in his mistresses house, Usman Durkwa pulled a gun on the already angry community members, but was eventually over powered and beaten up, along with his accomplices, including the them Hawul Local Government council Chairman, who hails from Marama.
They youths went on to allege that, since he became the deputy governor, Usman Durkwa has vowed to avenge himself, wherein he drafted some policemen from Maiduguri the state capital, who formed the habit of coming to Marama and jumping people’s fences, breaking doors and arresting anybody in sight.
Their latest victim, which nearly caused a religious riot in the area, but for the timely intervention of the Area Commander in Biu and The DPO in Hawul, was the arrest of the secretary of the EYN Church, Number, John Anjili Mbaya. As a Church leader, they argued that John has nothing to do with political party activities, and the police have no business abducting him in the manner they did.
“Given the nature of questions John and the others were asked, and the manner of abduction, we have every cause to believe that the operation being launched against Marama people and particularly against our church leaders was not officially ordered by the Police hierarchy”, they stressed, noting that, we have sufficient cause to believe that Usman Durkwa is the

Loot Recovery: FCDA Directors In Secret Asset Disposal

By Jonathan IPAA, Abuja

fcda directorsAs the March 31st 2016 deadline draws nearer, senior Directors under
the employment of the FCDA and FCTA are pushing faster to dispose of all traceable properties to avoid being confiscated by the anti graft agency.
This follows the FCT minister, Muhammad Bello’s last week directive that all members of staff of the Federal Capital Territory Administration including Agencies and Departments to declare their assets before March 31st, 2016 or get them forfeited.
The ministerial directive, nationalTrail correspondent gathered, has become necessary in view of the need to ensure that all civil servants comply with the requirements of the law under the provisions of Paragraph 11 of the 5th schedule of the Constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria.
The directive was contained in a circular signed by the FCTA Director of Establishment and Training, Mr. S.H. Mohammed.
Our findings in the city centre reveals that there is a rush patronage by estate agents to purchase these assets from some of the powerful directors who are still in service.
Luck was not coming due to lack of cash as the Treasury Single Account, TSA bits harder for the sale of such lucrative assets.
We understand, even members of the National Assembly who are mostly the biggest buyers of such assets are not for coming as the economy bits harder.
However, FCDA/FCTA directors are among the richest in the nation’s civil servants as they most choice estates, landed properties are traceable to their spouses or cronies.
Consequently, the latest circular they believe is targeted at them given the unrelenting tempo of the President Muhammadu Buhari war against corruption.
A similar gesture is said to have kicked off at the army headquarters where top generals are made to declare their loots or forfeit them when known.
According to the FCT circular, the law provides that all Public Officers should declare their Assets and Liabilities on:
The Minister seems not be relenting on his directive that all members of staff to fill the assets declaration form and submit the acknowledgement slip to the office of the Permanent Secretary on or before 31st March, 2016.
He, however, said those members of staff who have earlier declared their assets should submit their acknowledgment slips along with others on the said date.
The worst affected are those lobbying for political appointments under the new minister. Bello is yet to appoint his six mandate secretaries as required by law.

Boko Haram Fights Back In Defeat

  • Authorities Caught Napping As Sect Unleashes Terror, Kills 278 In Borno
  • Sect’s Resurgence Embarrassing To Buhari’s Govt- Shehu
  • We Are On Top Of The Situation, Boko Haram Weakened – Military

Boko-Haram-11The Nigerian Military seems to have underestimated the residual strength of the dreaded Boko Haram sect, and may have been in a rush in announcing its achievements, as recent events indicate that, Boko Haram is not only still lethal, but has the capacity to Cause further mischief, as the sect fights back even in the face of obvious defeat.
nationalTRAIl reports that, barely a week after the military authorities took stock of its various conquests over Boko Haram, in which they attempted to convince Nigerians that the nine years old war is almost over, the insurgents struck in several places, as if announcing their seeming omnipresence.
In the last one week, the sect has been unleashing havoc on Borno and Adamawa states, with the latest sack of Dalori and other satellite towns, including chibok, Wanori, Ngomari and some settlements around the University of Maiduguri, pn Borno State, as well as Gombi, in Adamawa State, in which not less than 278 people have been reported to have perished.
There was general panic in Maiduguri last Saturday when news filtered in that the insurgents were mobilizing to overrun the city, even as people fled the campus out of fear that the university may the next target of attack given its proximity to the areas already being attacked.
Our correspondent further reports that, even with assurances from the Military, that the situation was under control and that the insurgents could not proceed beyond the five areas, fears were still palpable on the faces of Maiduguri residents, most of whom spent the night keeping vigil around their areas.
In a seeming defeatist tone, occasioned by the renewed activities of the Boko Haram sect in the North east generally, which he promised to wipe out in three months of his administration, President Muhammadu Buhari admitted that his government has been embarrassed by its inability to curb the insurgency eight months after taking over the mantle of leadership of the country.
Buhari who spoke against the backdrop of plethora of suicide bombings in Chibok market, Dolari Internally Displaced Person’s (IDP) camp and other locations in Borno State and the Gombi market bombing in Adamawa State recently, said that the insurgents had become more desperate explaining that the recent bombings were attempts to gain public
Boko Haram Fights Back In Defeat sympathy and attention having suffered terribly in the hands of Nigerian military.
However, despite these renewed killings, Buhari insists that the terrorists had been rendered weak, confused and homeless after repeated bombings and ravaging of their camps and hide outs by the military, forcing them to find their way back into the society to wreak havoc, like the case of the Dolari IDP’s camp.
According to the President, the materials for the Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) were locally sourced by the insurgents just as he urged Nigerians especially residents of the north-east region to be more vigilant and circumspect.
“Having lost the war, they are seeking ways and means to gradually find their way back into society. They are not returning to contribute but to cause more havoc. They are so desperate to embarrass the government and the people that they have no qualms attacking isolated communities and markets.
“I urge all citizens wherever they live to own the war against terror and to be part of the fight because it is the only way we can finish the remaining work that needs to be done to make our country safe again,” worried Buhari said.
According to a statement by the Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu President Buhari “extended his condolences to all the people of Chibok, Gombi and Dolari who lost loved ones in the recent attacks and prayed that the Almighty God will comfort them and grant the injured persons quick recovery.”
Meanwhile , residents Dalori Village who came to claim their corpses at the State Specialist hospital in Maiduguri, the Borno state capital revealed how their village was attacked by the dreaded Islamic Sect on Saturday evening killing scores of people, before setting their houses on fire. According to them, the militants arrived the area at exactly 6:10 pm, just when people were preparing to say the maghrib prayers, and started shooting sporadically as they advanced.
A nurse at the State Specialist hospital confirmed that their facilities are being overstretched as the casualty figure has continued to rise with more corpses being recovered from the bush around the village, even as survivors have been trooping into Maiduguri to seek refuge and to identify their relations, whose corpses may have been brought to the hospital.
Umar Kachallah, a relation to one of the victims told Our Correspondent at the hospital on Sunday that, the insurgents killed some soldiers and members of the Civilian JTF at a road block close to their village before them moving into Dalori, stressing that the exact casualty figure may never be known as nobody can go to the area now.
Narrating how it happened, Kachallah said, “We all ran into our houses, mother came and started burning the house, if you come out they would shoot you but the fire would also burn you if you stay inside, so most of us dash out running. We escape but many of us were killed in the process. There was no security or military that came to our rescue because they were attacked first and did not get additional people until the Boko Haram left.”
He said, pointing to the corpses at the State Specialists hospital, “this is my brother Mallum Goni Kachallah, this is his wife Hussaina. They killed them. Come this is my wife and our child” He Sobs, “We did not do anything to this people, and they came and burnt my family and kill everybody”
Our correspondent also reports that people have lost count of the corpses being brought in from the scenes of the attack, with many of them taken to other health centres for lack of space at the state specialist hospital.
When Our Correspondent started taking photographs, of the Corpses hospital officials at the Morgue stopped him and asked him to go and obtain permission from the military who were stationed at the hospital gate and asked the hospital not to allow press access to photograph the corpses.
Speaking to one of the Soldiers at the hospital gate, he told Our Correspondent that, “We can only allow you to see but no pictures, that is the order given to us and you would not want us violating the orders for your sake. Keep your iPad in the car and go and see the corpses” the soldier said politely.
By then he had already two pictures, which he was allowed to go with a promise not to expose further. Getting back to the morgue our correspondent noticed that more people had arrived and were inspecting the corpses for possible identification and recovery of their own relations.
Ma’aji Bukar, one of the relations of three victims of the attack told Our Correspondent that the insurgents came with Six Toyota Hilux Vehicles and more than 25 motorcycles, moving from village to village, including, Wanori, Ngomari Karikari, Kofa and Dalori, killing randomly.
About 30 of the victims were killed in a Mosque at Ngomari Karikari, as they got set for the mahgrib prayers, over 50 killed at Kofa and over 50 also at Wanori villages. Some of the attacks were suicide bombers while that of Dalori is mostly gunshots as well as those killed in the flames. Our people at Kofa village told us that it was the Soldiers that prevented them from running away during the attack, he said.
A statement from the Operation Lafiya Dole confirmed the attacks, saying, “in their desperate efforts for reprisal attacks on strong, determined and committed members of the Civilian Joint Task Force (CJTF) and innocent citizen, yesterday 30 January 2016 BHT insurgent launched attacked Dalori through Yale from (rear of Dalori village)”.
The Military said the insurgents, according to an eye witnessed came in two Golf cars, motorcycles, and not Toyota Hilux vehicles as narrated by the villagers, and started opening fire and burning houses; their motive was to cause rancour and penetrate crowd with suicide bombers. This much was the case when people were running for their dear lives to Gomari Kerkeri village three female suicide bombers attempted to make their way into the crowd but were intercepted and subsequently got blown up.
“During the incident lives were lost while some people sustained injuries. The insurgents also attempted to penetrate Dalori IDP camp, but the attempt was resisted by the troop which resulted into detonation of IED by the suicide bombers”, the Military explained.
Theater commander Operation Lafiya Dole Major General Hassan Umaru had since paid condolence visit to the District Head of Dalori Alh Lawal Bashir and entire dwellers for the unfortunate incident, he was said to have obtained first hand details of the attack.
He assured the people of Theatre’s commitment in bring insurgency to an end soon, even as he commended the villagers for their resilience and urged them to be strong and committed in the fight against insurgency.
Earlier in Buma village, along the Maiduguri Damaturu road, at least four members of Civilian Joint Task Force and another Volunteer civilian were killed along while four others sustained injuries when a Toyota Hilux patrol vehicle rammed into landmines/ Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) suspected to have been planted by members of dreaded Boko Haram terrorists.
Buma village is 15 kilometres drive from troubled Ngamdu District of Kaga Local Government Area of Borno state. Benishiek headquarters of Kaga which is south west and about 85 kilometres drive from Maiduguri, the state capital, has remained a black spot for Boko Haram attacks in recent times.
Our Correspondent gathered from reliable source that the occupants of the ill fated vehicle were on patrol before stepping on the planted IEDs which exploded living 5 members of the Civilian JTF including a Volunteer dead, while four of the injured ones were rushed to the hospital for treatment.
Our correspondent who passed the route reports that, already, the dead victims have been buried according to Islamic rite, while two of those who sustained severe injuries have been rushed to University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital, having lost too much blood.
All effort to get confirmation from the Police Public Relations Officer of the Borno state Command, Mr. Victor Isuku proved abortive as his phone lines were not accessible at press time.

Revealed: How GEJ Released $37m To Rig Ekiti Election

Senators Uba, Omisore, Obanikoro,Ex-service Chiefs As Conspirators – PDP Scribe

ekiti electionIt was a can of worms last Sunday, following damning revelations by the Secretary of the Ekiti State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Dr. Temitope Aluko who gave a blow to blow account of how the military was used to rig the 2014 Ekiti State governorship election, thus paving way for Ayodele Fayose’s victory.
Aluko, who also was the Chief Returning Officer and signed the results for the election disclosed how former President Goodluck Jonathan, gave Fayose $37 million cash to prosecute the governorship election.
Not bothered that he was part of the alleged irregularities and scheming, Aluko in Abuja, noted that he was making the revelations because Fayose betrayed him and derailed from the original plan they had for the development of the state.
Aluko had also testified in camera before the military panel that investigated the role of the military in the Ekiti election.
According to Aluko, who said he was part Fayose’s inner caucus during the election, alleged that Jonathan initially gave the incumbent Ekiti governor a first tranche of $2 million in March 2014 for the primary election.
He noted that this cash was collected at the NNPC headquarters in Abuja and was taken to Fayose’s private house, in Abuja before it was moved to Ekiti.
“Immediately after the primary election, we collected another $35 million from Jonathan on June 17, 2014. The money was brought to us by the former Minister of State for Defence, Senator Musiliu Obanikoro.
“We all assembled at the front office of Spotless Hotel, Ado Ekiti, owned by Fayose. Thereafter, the cash was taken to a Bureau De Change in Onitsha where it was converted to N4.7 billion”, Aluko added.
Aluko, further alleged that Fayose received about N3 billion cash from Sen. Buruji Kashamu in 2013 to revive the PDP in Ekiti State.
Aluko who also gave account on how the military was used to win the election said “the former President agreed with Fayose and summoned a security meeting at the Presidential Villa for the purpose of the election.
“Those at the meeting were the former Chief of Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshall Alex Badeh; then Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Kenneth Minimmah; and former National Chairman of the PDP, Alhaji Adamu Mu’azu.
“Others included Fayose, Senator Iyiola Omisore, then Minister of Police Affairs, Jelili Adesiyan and Obanikoro.
“At that meeting, the former President made it clear to the ex Chief of Defence Staff that Fayose would stand for him (as Commander-In-Chief) in terms of providing security for the election”.
Aluko alleged that Fayose, relying on Jonathan’s directive, approached the former Commander of the Army Brigade in Akure, Brig. Gen. Dikko to take charge of the election for the PDP, who refused to cooperate and was replaced after a petition was filed against him.
“But Gen. Dikko did not give us audience. He stated bluntly that he would not be available for such operation. So, Fayose sponsored a petition against him which led to his replacement with Brig. Gen. Aliyu Momoh who was amenable to our plans”.
Aluko alleged that a total of 64 PDP stalwarts were picked, who had knowledge of their local governors were picked to help with information on opposition members.
“They gave detailed information regarding names and locations of opposition members in all the local governments, the various routes, areas of strength and weaknesses of the PDP in the 16 local governments.
“Today, most of these 64 hatchet men are members of the Senate, House of Representatives, state House of Assembly, commissioners, local government chairmen, special advisers and the rest”, Aluko said.
He continued, “We went into the election with 1040 recognised soldiers and another batch of 400 un-recognised soldiers brought from Enugu by Sen. Andy Uba.
“In addition, we raised 44 special strike teams brought in Toyota Hilux vehicles from Abuja and Onitsha. We made special stickers for the vehicles that conveyed members of the strike team and Black Hand bands for each of them.
“Each strike team was made up of 10 members headed by a soldier and comprising soldiers, policemen, DSS operatives and Civil Defence corps. They were detailed to attack and arrest prominent APC chieftains in all the local governments.
“We set up anchorage, mainly residential houses, in every local government where the strike team members collected their welfare and other allowances.
“To encourage the strike team members, we gave them orders to share money and other valuables they could lay their hands on in the houses of APC chieftains they raided.
“Then we set up detention camps, mainly in primary schools where most of the APC chieftains were detained. Others were detained in police stations where the DPOs were friendly with us. We let them off after the election was over.
“A day to the election, we used the military to block all routes in the local governments and prevented APC chieftains, including former Rivers State Governor, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi from coming into Ekiti.
“So we ensured that no APC chieftain was insight on election. We provided polling agents for the APC in most of the polling units so we had no problem getting them to sign election results in the units.
“All these local and foreign observers that described the election free and fair only witnessed the voting exercise on election day without knowing what transpired before the voting”.
Aluko aggrieved by what he termed a betrayal said “Before the election, Fayose, Femi Bamishile and I jointly swore with the Holy Bible on a sharing formula after we must have won the election. We agreed that Fayose would be governor, Bamishile his deputy and I Chief of Staff.”
He further lamented that Fayose reneged on the agreement even as he decried the derailment of the Ekiti project they had envisaged before.
In a swift reaction, Governor Ayodele Fayose has denied any wrong doing, describing the expelled former state Secretary of the PDP, Tope Aluko as a new distraction from the APC in the state.
The governor who spoke through his Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka said Aluko was already beclouded by his desperation to seek revenge against him because of his refusal to make him his Chief of Staff, such that he, Aluko, was not mindful offence of perjury.
He said “for Aluko to be taken seriously, he must first report himself to the Police to be tried for perjury and committed to prison for three years, since what he is now saying is different from what he said under oath at the election tribunal being the only witness called by the PDP and Governor Fayose.”

Tempers In NASS Over Corruption Allegations

Saraki/Dogara Fires Back At Obasanjo, Refutes Allegations
Lawmakers Say NASS Under Former President Was More Corrupt

Senate President Dr Bukola Saraki and Speaker of the House Of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara may replied former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s letter to them in which he accused lawmakers as being corrupt and insensitive to the economic realities of the country, but tempers are flaring up over the matter as lawmakers feel the replies were too weak for the man who took them to the cleaners.
The former President in his characteristic way communicated to the leaders of the National Assembly via a letter dated 13th January, 2016, in which he alleged that, the lawmakers have been circumventing the laws on their remunerations by fixing for themselves outrageous entitlements that negate the recommendations of the revenue mobilization allocation and Fiscal Commission, RMAFC.
Olusegun Obasanjo was quoted as saying he wrote to the leaders of the two chambers of the national Assembly in his capacity as a statesman, who will not shy away from pointing out faults, even if doing so may hurt some people, but the lawmakers feel that Obasanjo’s action was far from being statesmanlike.
Both Saraki and Dogara made very wide consultation on how best to respond to Obasanjo’s letter without stirring controversies, heating up the polity or showing disrespect to the former President, who they hold with reverence, but their replies still failed to impress their colleagues, who are now accusing the former president of misplaced anger over his botched third term bid.
Senator Dino Melaye from Kogi state seems to have summed up the feelings of the lawmakers when he lampooned Obasanjo of embarking on a wild vendetta mission against the national assembly for shooting down his third term kite during the sixth Assembly.
Our correspondent learnt that, as much as The duo of Bukola Saraki and Yakubu Dogara were reluctant in joining issues with the former President, they have come under tremendous pressures from their colleagues; both senators and members of the House of Representatives, who are compelling them to respond to Obasanjo’s letter with the same venom that he accused the national Assembly members as being corrupt.
A Senator from the north west and another from the South /South who spoke on conditions of anonymity told our correspondent that former President Obasanjo seems to be taking privileges being accorded him as a leader rather too far, and there is the need to point out to him that he is not the saint he pretends to be.
According to them, the national Assembly under President Obasanjo was more corrupt, and earned twice what the present crop of lawmakers are taking home, making him the least morally qualified to accuse the senate or the house of representatives as being corrupt.
He said the lawmakers are prepared for the former President this time around, as he has been allowed to get away with similar such allegations in the past, saying if Saraki and Dogara are reluctant in confronting Obasanjo, members are prepared to vent their own venom in an uncomplimentary as the former president’s letter.
The lawmakers, our correspondent learnt were angry with the former President’s reported dismissal of their reactions, where he was quoted as saying that he did not write to the two leaders out of any mischief but rather from a patriotic and statesmanlike disposition, pointing out the rot under their collective watch and the need to make amends.
Sounding rather surprised that the contents of his letter had leaked to the press, the former President told our correspondent rather sarcastically that,” there was nothing secret about what I wrote, and I will not shirk my responsibilities as a statesman in saying my mind on the state of the nation”.
Both the Senate President and the Speaker of the House of Representatives have sent their separate replies to Obasanjo, in which they absolved the legislature from any blames, even as they promised to make details of the National Assembly budget available for public scrutiny. There are indications however that when the National Assembly resumes plenary Obasanjo’s letter may be reopened for further comments from lawmakers

Gov Shettima Risks Alamieyeseigha Treatment

How EFCC Visit Caused Scare In Borno

ALAMIEYESIGHAMembers of the Borno state House of assembly may be under pressures to initiate moves for the impeachment of Governor Kashim Shettima, reminiscent of the late Diepriye Alamieyeseigha saga in Bayelsa state, to pave way for his investigation and prosecution over the alleged mismanagement of the state resources, and alleged hobnobbing with Boko Haram elements.
Sources revealed that, last week’s scare caused by the reported visit of EFCC officials to Borno state may not be unconnected with such moves being made to get the Borno lawmakers, who have been virtually pocketed by the governor, to sign an impeachment notice, as a way of getting the Governor out of the way.
We learnt that an alliance of top Borno stakeholders have concluded plans to facilitate Governor Shettima’s impeachment, as a way of removing the immunity under which he hides and bring him to book for the squander of over N600 Billion that accrued to the State Government and the 28 Local Government Areas.
Going by the online reactions to last week’s reported visit to Borno state by ati graft operatives, it is immaterial whether it happened exactly the way it was reported last week or not, but the fact remains that there is a general growing dissatisfaction with the manner the resources of the state are being plundered.
Governor Kashim Shettima’s hurried return to Abuja, barely after twelve hours of his return to the state after a three weeks sojourn in Abuja, may not be unconnected with the rumours making the rounds, that, the issues with the state House of Assembly may not be unconnected with the rumoured moves to remove him.
Our correspondent reports that there has been no love lost
between President Muhammadu Buhari and the Governor following the failure of the Borno helmsman to give convincing account of the management of the finances of the state and his alleged involvement with boko Haram elements.
While Governor Shettima runs from pillar to pole trying to secure the support of fellow governors and the APC national leader, Bola Ahmed tinubu, reports reaching us indicate that there is palpable scare amongst top Borno state Government officials, including members of the Borno state House of Assembly, who in one way or the other may have soiled their hands in corrupt activity over the past four years.
Investigations reveal that, with all the denials last week that members of the Assembly did not flee from the complex following reports of the advent of EFCC operatives, our correspondent reports that most top Government officials have fled Maiduguri, with the governor leaving as hurriedly as he returned to Maiduguri the previous day, ostensibly to continue his search for a soft landing with President Muhammadu Buhari.
Sources told our correspondent that the Governor has remained highly rattled by reports Last week that EFCC officials were in the state to investigate allegations of financial impropriety, running to the tune of N6oo Billion, even as members of the Assembly behind whom he hides to commit some of the offences, were themselves reported to be on the run.
As it is, Government work is at a virtual standstill due to the absence of most top officials, and the general paucity of funds that have been affecting ministries. Reports indicate that ministries are being owed three years arrears of overhead cost, while all capital projects have been abandoned for lack of funds.
There were rumours in Maiduguri on Sunday that the Accountant general of the state, along with eight serving and former commissioners have again been summoned to the EFCC headquarters in Abuja, in continuation of an ongoing investigation into alleged corrupt conducts, for which unless the governor is put out of the way, getting to the roots of the matter may prove difficult.
nationalTRAIL invites readers to go through the online reactions to the reported probe of Borno Government officials to be able to gauge the mood of people in the state.