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Tinubu’s Running Mate: Governor Bagudu as APC’s Trump Card

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In the next few days, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, will necessarily have to name his running mate. This is following an announcement by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, that all presidential candidates must conclude the choice of their running mates and upload it to its portal by June 17.
For the two leading presidential contestants, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, and Tinubu, choosing a running mate has been equally as gruelling and rigorous as emerging their respective party’s candidates.
Consultations have been extensive. Allies and advisers, and party stakeholders and supporters have been floating different names into the media to see which one gets oxygen. The existential fact today is that to win the presidential race, the possibility that conventional patterns would be ignored is sky-high. No longer would the vice president be chosen to balance the ticket for mere political expediency. What obtains now and what each of the candidates wants is a partner, a vice president that can complement their experience and plans and programmes for the nation. Certainly, not just another understudy.
Whoever the vice-presidential candidate of either party turns out to be, they must be a person who could help the ticket to win and help the president to govern and be ready to step into the office should something happen to the president. Finding the perfect combination may be impossible. But Tinubu is a lucky man. A southern Moslem who requires the majority votes of the Moslem northwest to win the presidential race, he needs not to look far for that individual that would turn out to be his and the party’s ace in the hole come February 2023. The figure loomed large, unobtrusive, but highly influential and instrumental to the successful outcome of the convention.
Echoes of the APC national convention and presidential primaries held last week in Abuja still reverberate loudly across the nation. The intrigues that preceded and pervaded the convention and the eventual emergence of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu as the flag-bearer of the APC are still very fresh in memory.
One of the hair-raising moments as the convention got underway in Abuja was the announcement that the national chairman of the APC, Senator Abdullahi Adamu had announced Senate President Dr Ahmad Lawan as the consensus candidate of the party. It was a trial balloon that was quickly punctured by a coalition of northern governors and, particularly, the Progressives Governor’s Forum chaired by Governor Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi State. They stuck by the agreement that power must return to the south.
Many Nigerians may not realise the efforts of the Bagudu-led PGF but, President Muhammadu Buhari does. Some days back, he wrote a letter of appreciation to Governor Bagudu for playing an extraordinary role in ensuring the successful conduct of the convention.
In the letter, the President said he was pleased to see how Bagudu, who also served as chairman of the Presidential Convention Planning Committee, handled his brief professionally and efficiently. The President said, “Your commitment in pursuit of equity and fairness speaks volumes in the cooperation displayed by APC governors. This indeed demonstrates the camaraderie that brought us together over eight years ago. The party primaries were peacefully conducted and the delegates selected the candidate to carry the APC flag in the 2023 presidential poll. Today, as a patriotic APC member and stakeholder, I trust that you will come together to work with our candidate to win the 2023 elections.”
Indeed, without the timely and proactive intervention of Governor Bagudu and the Northern governors, Nigerians would probably be doing a post-mortem of the APC by now. That did not happen and a grateful President Muhammadu Buhari has shown his profound appreciation.
Bagudu displayed loyalty and leadership, integrity, and capacity when it mattered most. He was a calming influence in the deluge of tempests and maelstroms that preceded the convention. Thus, as the search for the APC’s vice presidential nominee intensifies in the days ahead, it is only advisable that Bagudu, from the north-western state of Kebbi, is strongly considered.
Bagudu comes well-acquitted for the job and he is one person that can deliver a sure-fire boost to APC’s chances. He is in his second term as Governor of Kebbi State. A former senator, he has legislative and executive experiences and can galvanise Nigerian youths with his smooth-talking and catholic candour. A thoroughbred personality, Bagudu has a Master’s degree in Economics from the University of Jos and a Master of Art from Columbia University, U.S.A.
Like his prospective principal, Bagudu is a liberal-minded Moslem. Blessed with the gravitas and temperament of an accustomed leader, there is no scintilla of doubt that when called upon, Bagudu can easily step into his principal’s shoes and run the nation adroitly.
The final decision will likely come down to Tinubu’s rapport with the vice-presidential candidate. And that is where Bagudu also trumps all; their track records as legislators and chief executives of a state; and backgrounds in finance and economics. They would seamlessly complement each other and deliver a Nigeria that works for all.

Teju Ajayi is a Practicing Architect and Public affairs analyst.

Society

Despite his “expulsion”, ADC presidential candidate, Kachikwu, makes INEC list

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Mr Kachikwu was expelled from the party last Friday by the Ralph Nwosu-led NWC.

The embattled presidential candidate of the African Democratic Congress (ADC), Dumebi Kachikwu, has been named among candidates validly nominated by political parties for the 2023 presidential election despite his “expulsion” from the party.

Mr Kachikwu was among the 18 presidential candidates approved by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Tuesday.

The Ralph Nwosu-led National Working Committee (NWC) of the party announced the expulsion of Mr Kachikwu from the party last Friday for alleged anti-party activities.

He was expelled along with seven other key party leaders following the recommendation of a seven-member disciplinary committee earlier set up by the ADC NWC. The NWC had earlier on 2 September placed the presidential candidate on suspension.

Mr Nwosu, in a statement issued late Friday, said the disciplinary committee found Mr Kachikwu guilty of allegations of gross misconduct, and gross violations of its constitution, among others.

But in its reaction the following day, the interim leadership of the ADC dismissed Mr Kachikwu’s purported expulsion.

The interim National Chairman of the Party, Patricia Akwashiki, in a statement, described the action of the erstwhile chairman, Mr Nwosu, as the antics of a sinking man clutching at straws.

The crisis rocking the ADC has its genesis in the call for the resignation of the national chairman by 27 state chairmen of the party, having spent 17 years in the office.

At the time of filing this report, we could not confirm if the party’s leadership had made formal or legal requests to the commission to remove the candidate from the list.

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Stella Obasanjo’s brother, John Abebe, arraigned for fraud

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Dr. John Abebe, the younger brother of a former First Lady, Stella Obasanjo, was on Monday arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Monday before the Lagos State Special Offences Court in Ikeja over allegations of fraud.

Abebe was arraigned alongside a former Head of Firstbank Plc, United Kingdom Correspondent Office, Kamoru Alade Oladimeji, before Justice Olubunmi Abike-Fadipe on six charges of conspiracy, stealing, and obtaining money under pretence.

Part of the counts against the defendants read: “That you, Dr. John Abebe and Kamoru Alade Oladimeji, on or about the 4th day of June 2013 in Lagos within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court conspired amongst yourselves to commit felony to wit; stealing the sum of N120 million worth of property of Arsenal Technologies Limited.”

“That you, Dr. John Abebe and Kamoru Alade Oladimeji, on or about the 4th day of June 2013, in Lagos within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court conspired amongst yourselves to commit felony to wit; obtaining by false pretence the sum of N120 million property of Arsenal Technologies Limited under the pretence that your property lying being and situate at 9, Magbon Close, Ikoyi-Lagos State, which you pledged as the security to the Arsenal Technologies Limited was unencumbered, which representation you knew to be false.”

“That you Dr. John Abebe and Inducon Nigeria Limited, on or about the 4th day of June 2013, in Lagos within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, with intent to defraud and to gain for yourself the sum of $1,000,000.00 or its Naira equivalent from Arsenal Technologies Limited by false pretence to procure the execution of valuable security to wit; a deed of assignment between Inducon Nigeria Limited and Arsenal Technologies Limited, wherein you falsely claimed that the property lying being and situate at No. 9, Magbon Close, Ikoyi-Lagos was unencumbered and that you have full powers to assign and transfer the said property to the assignor; Arsenal Technologies Limited.

According to EFCC, the offences committed are contrary to Sections 280(1), (12), 8 (7), 285(1) and 278(1)(b) of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State, 2011.

The defendants, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.

Following their plea, the prosecutor, Sulaimon urged the court to fix a trial date and to remand the defendants in the custody of the Nigerian Correctional Services until the hearing and determination of the charge.

However, the defense counsel, Anthony Popo and Sam Etaifo urged the court to grant their clients bail in the most liberal terms.

While moving the bail application on behalf of Abebe, Popo told the judge that the matter before her is a commercial transaction between the first defendant and the nominal complainant, which he is ready to settle out of court.

He also claimed that Abebe had paid back the sums of $100,000 and N30 million to the complainant and had also deposited the title document of 26 acres of land and the documents of a property in London to show his seriousness to resolve the matter.

The lawyer further submitted that the defendant would not jump bail since he never violated the terms of the administrative bail granted to him by the EFCC.

The prosecutor did not oppose the application but urged the court to impose stringent terms that will ensure the defendant’s appearance in court for their trial.

In her ruling, Justice Abike-Fadipe granted the first defendant bail in the sum of N20 million with one surety in like sum.

She directed that the surety must be a resident of Lagos and must deposit the title document of a land property whose value must not be less than N20m

The judge also admitted the second defendant to bail in the sum of N10m with one surety in like sum, who must be a resident of the state.

Justice Abike-Fadipe further ordered that the defendant shall continue to enjoy the administrative bail earlier granted to them by the EFCC but if they failed after seven days to perfect the terms of the bail she granted them, they shall be arrested and remanded in prison.

She adjourned the case to December 6 for commencement of trial.

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HIGHGARDEN CELEBRATES WORLD CLEANUP DAY

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The Eleko Beach stretching over 5km was cleaned on the 17th of September 2022 by Volunteers from HighGarden Private Beach Club to celebrate the world Cleanup day.

World Cleanup Day is an annual global social action program aimed at combating the global solid waste problem, including the problem of marine debris. It is coordinated by the global organization Let’s Do It! World.

 

According to the MD of Highgarden Mr Wale Ewedemi “Environmental cleanliness and awareness is key to our values as a lifestyle brand, so we use the world Cleanup day to indoctrinate our customers and friends into one of our core lifestyle values”

 

The event that started at 9am rounded up about noon. Plastics and debri Collected were separated and marked for pickup.

 

The HighGarden Private Beach Club in Eleko boast of the first Glamping site in Nigeria.

@highgardenprivatebeach

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