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APC woos Duke, Ndoma-Egba, others




In continuation of its poaching of high profile personalities from other political parties, the All Progressives Congress (APC) has commenced moves to woo a former Senate Leader, Senator Victor Ndoma-Egba into its fold in Cross River State.

Also on the list of the APC are former governors of the state, Mr. Donald Duke and Chief Clement Ebri. Ndoma-

Egba, a consummate parliamentarian and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), lost out in the power game in the build up to the last general elections when he could not secure the ticket of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to seek re-election to the upper chamber of the National Assembly.

He had recently expressed frustration at the manner he was shut out of the race and openly declared that he cannot continue to “hang around” the PDP anymore.

A high powered delegation of members of the State Executive of the APC in Cross River State yesterday visited Ndoma- Egba in Abuja to formally invite him to join the governing party.

The delegation was led by the Vice Chairman, Central Senatorial District and Chairman of the Stabilisation and Mobilisation Committee of the party in the state, Cletus Obun. Obun, who extolled the virtues of the former Senate Leader, stated that the APC needed men of character and integrity like him.

The party leaders urged Ndoma-Egba to ignore recent media attacks on his person on his inevitable membership of the party. He said the attacks were not from the APC but sponsored hirelings of the opposition party.

According to Obun, the APC had at an enlarged stakeholders’ meeting resolved to go on a membership drive to increase its members ahead of the forthcoming local government elections in the state.

He said that Ndoma- Egba was top on the list of those to be wooed given the ill-treatment meted on him by PDP before the last polls.

A member of the delegation and former Minority Leader of the Cross River State House of Assembly, Hon. Alex Irek, said the party mandated them to plead with the former Senate Leader to join APC, saying his “defection is long overdue as members of the APC are anxiously waiting for you.”

“It was also resolved at the APC elders’ meeting that was held recently in Obubra to persuade Ndoma-Egba at all cost to join the party. It’s not just going on a membership drive, but getting persons of impeccable character and personality like you,” he stated. Reacting to the invitation, Ndoma-Egba thanked the delegation for the visit.

He said that, as a student of history, it will be the height of selfishness if he did not consider their offer. He, however, promised to follow the necessary protocol of consulting with his supporters.

He reiterated that in three years the PDP had not invited him to any meeting or events thus effectively shutting him out of the party, but that he is not retiring from politics.

It will be recalled that the Cross River State PDP Chairman Ntufam Okon had recently stated that Ndoma-Egba was shut out because he kept the company of Dr. Sandy Onor, three time Director General of Senator Liyel Imoke’s Campaign Organisation and Commissioner for Environment in Imoke’s administration.

In the last few months, there has been a lot of speculations about the purported moves by Ndoma- Egba and other political heavyweights of the PDP to defect to the APC in Cross River State.

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PDP Crisis: Dele Momodu warns Wike to apply brakes before it’s too late



Former presidential aspirant of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Dele Momodu has urged Governor Nyesom Wike of River State to thread softly before it becomes too late. 

The remark is coming amid internal wrangling between the Rivers governor and the presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, Abubakar Atiku. 

“Many politicians survive only on power. My Brother, I love you. But someone must be able to tell you the truth. No General fights on too many fronts. Please, apply the brakes, before it is too late,” he said. 

Momodu made the plea in a statement titled, “My Kobo Advice to Governor Nyesom Wike,” which he issued via his verified Instagram handle on Thursday.

He said, “My dear Brother, good evening. I have watched you in recent months with trepidation. I’m scared about your inability to comprehend the country called Nigeria. You must have underrated how the owners of Nigeria operate. 

“I studied the biography of Chief Obafemi Awolowo. I was an insider in the June 12 1993 crisis, and a veritable witness to the tribulations of my great mentor, Chief Moshood Abiola. Closer home, you must have seen how your predecessor, Dr. Peter Odili, was stopped in his tracks in 2007.

“You’re certainly one of Nigeria’s best performing Governors, if not the best. Personally, I’m very proud of your uncommon achievements. I know you are very angry. It is your right to be. But I’m begging you in the name of God not to take decisions based on anger… Nigeria has been very kind to you. 

“Rivers State has been extremely generous to you. GOD has blessed you beyond imagination. You have such a beautiful family. Your people love you stupendously for services delivered to them. PDP has been your solid platform. 

“You should never destroy a bridge after crossing the river. Even if you no longer need the bridge, what of your friends and family? I pray you kill this excessive and perpetual ANGER. It is getting out of hand. Most people around you will keep quiet for fear of losing patronage,” he said. 

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Muslim-Muslim Ticket: Catholics want Lalong suspended



Some members of the Roman Catholic Church in Nigeria have called for the suspension of Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State from the church over his reference to the pope while defending his acceptance to serve as the Director General (DG) of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Presidential Campaign Council.

Lalong, on Wednesday, told correspondents at the presidential villa, Abuja, that as a Catholic and papal knight, the pope had not told him that it was wrong for him to lead the Muslim-Muslim presidential campaign team.

Following the comment, aggrieved Catholic faithful criticised the governor for bringing the church into disrepute and dragging the Holy Father into the murky politics of Nigeria.

But Lalong said his reference to Pope Francis on his appointment was out of reverence and not disregard for the Holy Father, Catholic Church or Christianity.

He said it was unfortunate that part of the interview had been excised and used by politicians for propaganda and misinformation about his personality, faith and political persuasion.

The President of the Concerned Catholics in Nigeria (CCN), Dr Ben Amodu, at a press conference yesterday in Abuja, said Lalong must tender an apology for maligning the name of the pope and the entire church.

He also said the leadership of the Catholic community in Nigeria must ensure that the governor was made to atone for his blasphemous statement about the pope and the Catholic Church in public.

Amodu said, “The fact that Governor Simon Bako Lalong, a practicing Catholic who supposedly knows that the Catholic Church is not involved in partisan politics, but still went ahead to insinuate that the pope is in support of his decision smacks a mockery of the revered Catholic Church in Nigeria and around the world.

“The Concerned Catholics in Nigeria condemn such despicable conduct as it is not reflective of the stance of the pope and the Catholic Church in Nigeria and around the world concerning the political permutations in Nigeria.” 

‘My reference to pope mark of reverence’

Governor Lalong, in a statement yesterday by his media aide, said it was unfortunate that part of his remarks had been used by politicians for propaganda and misinformation about his personality, faith and political persuasion.

He said, “My reference to the Holy Father, the Pope, was to emphasise that as a Christian born and raised in the Catholic faith, accepting the assignment given to me by my party, the APC, of which I am a founding member, does not in any way remove my faith in Jesus Christ or my commitment to the church in Nigeria and universally.

“Those who know me can attest to my respect for the church, Christianity and spiritual fathers of all denominations. They know my modest contribution to the growth of the church in Plateau State, Northern Nigeria and Nigeria at large and can testify to it.”

The governor further said he had high regard for Christians and church authority and would continue to work hard in promoting the interests of Christians and adherents of other religions based on love, justice, equity and fairness.w

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PDP primary: Gov Wike drags Atiku, Tambuwa to court, demands removal from INEC list



The Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike has sued the PDP presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, the party and the Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Tambuwal over the conduct of party’s primary held May 29, 2022.

During the primary election held in Abuja, the Sokoto Governor, while addressing delegates, asked them to vote for him but later declared that he stepped down for the former Vice President, Atiku.

The election had Atiku poll 371 votes as winner, while Wike and Bukola Saraki garnered 237 and 70 votes, respectively.

Wike and his loyalists have been in a face-off with Atiku’s camp since the conclusion of the PDP’s primary election.

Following the prolonged crisis rocking the party, Wike and a PDP chieftain, Newgent Ekamon have now dragged Atiku, Tambuwal and the PDP to court in a suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/782/2022.

In the originating summons, the PDP is listed as the first respondent, while the Independent National Electoral Commission is the 2nd respondent. Tambuwal and Atiku are listed as the 3rd and 4th respondents, respectively.

Among other issues listed, Wike and Ekamon asked the court to order the INEC to reject or remove Atiku from “its list of candidates in the 2023 presidential election.”

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