Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State, on Sunday said credible election under the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration was dead.
Fayose made the remark while reacting to Saturday’s legislative rerun election in Rivers State.
He lamented that the rerun elections in Rivers State was a sad reminder of the level of destruction already done to the country’s electoral process by the All Progressives Congress, APC- led Federal Government.
The governor claimed that the legacy of free, fair and credible election the APC – led Federal Government inherited from the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, had been destroyed less than two years of being in power.
In a release issued by his Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, Fayose said, “Free, fair and credible election is dead in the country and that whatever victory that is recorded by any political party in the Rivers State election will be nothing but victory at gun-point.
“We thought that we have gone past this era of manipulated electoral process after the 2015 general elections, which brought the APC and President Buhari to power, but the Buhari’s administration has taken us back to the stone age by merging his party, APC with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the police, military and other security agencies.”
Fayose said with what was witnessed in Rivers State yesterday, it is clear that Nigeria is under siege.
He called for swift intervention from the international community in order to save can Nigeria’s democracy from imminent.
“It is sad that snatching of ballot boxes, hijacking of voting materials and electoral violence which had become a thing of the past have now become part of our electoral process.
“It is even more worrisome that despite that votes are counted openly at the polling units, electorates are no longer sure of the results of elections until announcement by INEC, which has become an organ of the APC,” he said.
The statement further quoted Fayose as saying, “The order of the day in Nigeria now is disobedience to court orders, abuse of human rights, extra judicial killings and mass burial of innocent Nigerians killed by the Army.
“The reality we must all face is that should all these be allowed to continue, Nigeria faces imminent danger and the international community must not allow the country to get to that level of total collapse before it begins to call President Buhari and his APC to order.”
Army withholds salaries of 45 soldiers in Borno
Authorities of the 7 Division Nigerian Army, Maiduguri, have withheld the salaries of 45 soldiers, according to sources.
The soldiers, who were among the 149 troops of the 153 Task Force Battalion withdrawn from Marte, Borno State, after spending three years in counterinsurgency operations, were accused of for abandoning their duty posts.
The battalion came under attack on three occasions during which several soldiers were killed while a range of weapons, equipment and vehicles were either carted away or destroyed.
The battalion was overhauled after the last attack in February.
A source said necessary changes were made and troops who served with the battalion were moved to different formations in Maiduguri before a new deployment was made.
“Some of the soldiers who were not seen at their new units were believed to have gone on AWOL (Absence Without Leave). Their salaries accounts were not credited in April,” he said.
But one of the affected soldiers said the allegation of desertion against them was untrue.
“We were not given our salaries and when we asked our supervisors in the 7 Division, we were shocked to hear that we had forfeited all our entitlements over desertion.”
Attempts to get the response of army authorities were not successful.
EFCC goes after top officials of PDP over N10bn scandal
The Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) has invited officials of People’s Democratic Party (PDP) for questioning over alleged criminal conspiracy, abuse of office, diversion of funds and fraud.
This is coming barely a month after a chieftain in the PDP, Kazeem Afegbua, petitioned the anti-graft agency to scrutinise the Secondus-led National Working Committee on financial misappropriation.
In the letter of invitation dated May 17, 2021, and addressed to the Prince Uche Secondus, the EFCC said the need to obtain certain clarification from the party has become imperative.
The agency, however, requested the party’s National chairman to release the National Auditor, National Organising Secretary and Director of Finance to report at the EFCC headquarters from May 19th to 21st 2021.
The agency also requested the national officers to honor the invitation with relevant documents relating to sole of forms into the party’s elective positions from January 2017 to date.
Kazeem had in his petition alleged that much of the financial transactions of the PDP under Prince Uche Secondus has been shrouded in mystery, accusing the leadership of deliberate attempt to shortchange the party in the build up to the 2023 general elections.
However, Secondus had since denied the allegation and filed a N1 billion suit against the petitioner, Kazeem Afegbua.
Nigeria’s drug control agency approves new COVID-19 vaccine
The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), has granted approval for the conditional emergency use of Janssen COVID-19 vaccine in Nigeria.
Janssen COVID-19 vaccine is the third vaccine recommended for administration in the country.
The director-general of NAFDAC, Prof. Mojiola Adeyeye, in a statement on Tuesday, said information on the vaccine shows it met the criteria for efficacy, safety and quality.
She said, “The Janssen COVID-19 vaccine is administered as a single dose. Results from a clinical trial involving people in the United States, South Africa and Latin American countries found that Janssen COVID-19 vaccine was effective at preventing COVID-19 in people from 18 years of age.
“The Phase III clinical trial involved over 44,000 people. Half received a single dose of the vaccine and half were given placebo (a dummy injection). People did not know if they had been given Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine or placebo.
According to her, the trial showed a 67 per cent reduction in the number of symptomatic COVID-19 cases after two weeks in people who received Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine.
The most commonly reported side effects were pain at the injection site, headache, fatigue, muscle aches and nausea. Most of these side effects were mild to moderate in severity and lasted 1-2 days.
On the vaccine safety, Adeyeye said NAFDAC, in line with its pharmacovigilance and safety monitoring plan for COVID-19 vaccines, will closely monitor and subject the Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine to several activities that apply specifically to COVID-19 vaccines.
The AstraZeneca vaccine which Nigeria has been giving out has garnered many sceptics internationally after some recipients of the vaccine died.
At least 16 countries including Germany, France and Sweden have suspended the use of AstraZeneca, which put on the Nigerian government to suspend it.
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