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I didn’t say Nigeria’s infrastructure is better than the US – Fashola

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The Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, yesterday clarified the statement attributed to him in the media that Nigeria’s achievements in Infrastructure have surpassed that of the United States.

He explained that such news were a deliberate misreporting of his clear statement of fact and a campaign of lies by the main opposition, even as the 2023 election draws near.

According to a statement by the Special Adviser on Communication to the Minister, Hakeem Bello, Fashola said: “The first point to make is that I didn’t say that Nigeria’s infrastructure was better than America’s infrastructure, because certainly anybody who knows what he is doing will know that America is a much richer nation, their infrastructure is well ahead of Nigeria.

“What I was talking about at the presentation with the All Progressives Congress (APC) Youth Ministerial Conference was about the challenges of infrastructure. And that it is universal. Every country commits to infrastructure as a legitimate way to create work, to grow the economy and distribute wealth as we have seen here.

“That’s the first point I was making, and that in a democracy you always need the parliament to authorise what you spend on infrastructure. And so I was making the comparison that Buhari has been able to get his parliament to authorise his spending, and that is why we were even able to gather here (at the Special Ministerial Conversational Conference). But that the American government is struggling to get authorisation from their own parliament to start what we are already doing. I didn’t say our infrastructure is better than theirs.

“It’s a campaign of lies and misinformation. The main opposition has a very uncomfortable relationship with the truth, so they are going to run a campaign of lies and disinformation. So we must be ready for it.

“The progress we are making here makes them very uncomfortable. So they can’t disprove that work is going on. They can’t disprove that infrastructure is being developed. So they are going to look for every way to distort and misinform the public.”

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Woman claims King Sunny Ade is her biological father, says ‘I’m not after his fame or money’

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A middle-aged woman, Elizabeth Temitope, has claimed that legendary musician, King Sunny Ade, is her biological father.

The woman, who spoke with Punch said a prophet had informed her that there was a secret her mother withheld for decades, urging her to persuade her mother to confess.

Temitope said her mother told her the man she had always known as her father was not her biological father but King Sunny Ade was.

However, several efforts to get in contact with King Sunny Ade had proved abortive, she said.

The woman said she approached the Human Rights Commission and wrote Sunny Ade twice but there had been no response from the musician.

She noted that she was not making efforts to contact Sunny Ade for his fame or riches but she wanted to confirm if she was his father or not.

She said, “In 2019, a prophet called me and asked about my mother, he said I should persuade her to reveal a secret to me. I initially didn’t consider the message as important but I informed my husband but he told me not to disregard the message.

“He implored me to do as the prophet had said. My mother was staying with one of my sisters in Ifo. I called her, she came around and I told her what the prophet told me. She confessed and said the man I had always known as ‘Father’ was not my biological father. I was confused so I asked who my father is. She said Niyi, I made further inquiries to know his hometown.

“She said King Sunny Ade, the famous musician from Ondo State. I couldn’t believe I was just learning about it for the first time in so many years. My husband asked me to calm down because I was already tense.

“She told me when she was a young lady, her father wanted to give her hand in marriage to an old man. She initially declined but was persuaded to accept the man.

“Meanwhile, she had met Niyi before then and was already two months pregnant for him. She said she told her mother she was already pregnant but could not tell Niyi about it.

“She eventually married the old man but because she didn’t love him, she went to Ondo State to look for Niyi but couldn’t find him.

“According to what she told me, she was always quarrelling with the man and didn’t allow him to copulate with her and after several months, he sent her packing and she returned to her parents. It was there she gave birth to me and after a year, got married to another man.

“When I clocked two, the aged man who my mother was married to, came to pick me up, refused to send me to school. I was there for a while before I met my husband. After my wedding, we relocated to the north, I spent 10 years there and had all my children. My mother was not in the picture all this while, I didn’t even know her. But when I returned to Lagos, we reconnected.

“So, when the prophet delivered that message, I challenged my mother and she told the truth. My husband said she should take us to my biological father’s house, we went there but we couldn’t meet him. We went another day, but we couldn’t meet him. We were informed that there is a festival in Ondo that he doesn’t miss.

“We went there and saw him performing on stage, we waited but at the end of the day, the efforts were futile. Since then, I have been trying to meet him but it’s still the same.

“I approached the National Human Rights Commission, they wrote him twice, nothing. I’m not making efforts to meet him because of money or fame but because I want to know my origin.”

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Organ harvesting: Dino Melaye reacts to arrest of Ekweremadu, wife

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Dino Melaye

Former Kogi West Senator, Dino Melaye has expressed his support for ex-Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu amid controversy of alleged organ harvesting.

Melaye said he stands with Ekweremadu because there was no wrongdoing by the Senator.

Ekweremadu and his wife, Beatrice were arrested in London for allegedly plotting to harvest the kidney of a Nigerian minor.

The UK metropolitan police had arrested and charged Ekweremadu and his wife to court, but the duo pleaded not guilty to the charges at the Uxbridge Magistrates’ Court.

“These are serious allegations and these matters are now adjourned until 7 July back here at Uxbridge,” Magistrate Lois Sheard said.

Ms Sheard remanded both defendants in custody ahead of their hearing next month.

Sharing Ekweremadu’s letter via his Twitter handle, Melaye wrote: “Sen. Ike Ekweremadu notified the British authorities on his trip with the said boy. I stand with Ike.”

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Supreme Court set to rule on controversial Electoral Act on Friday

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The Supreme Court of Nigeria will on Friday deliver judgment on the legality or otherwise of the controversial section 84 (12) of the Electoral Act 2022 .

The apex Court is set for its verdict in the suit instituted against the National Assembly by President Muhammadu Buhari and the Attorney General of the Federation AGF and Minister of Justice.

A notice for the judgment delivery has just been sighted, indicating that the apex Court will make its position known this morning.

The notice was served on Buhari and the National Assembly on Thursday, inviting them to appear before the court today for their judgment.

Our correspondent further observed that the suit is the only one for determination today.

Buhari and Abubakar Malami had filed the suit at the Supreme Court, seeking an interpretation of the controversial clause in the Electoral Amendment Act 2022.

In the suit filed on April 29, Buhari and Malami, who are the plaintiffs, listed the National Assembly as the sole defendant.

Section 84 (12) has been a subject of intense litigation and political debate in Nigeria since President Buhari signed the amended Electoral Act 2022 into law in February this year.

Shortly after signing it into law, Buhari had asked the parliament to delete the controversial clause in the Electoral Act, but the National Assembly declined the president’s request.

According to Section 84 (12) of the legislation, “No political appointee at any level shall be a voting delegate or be voted for at the convention or congress of any political party for the purpose of the nomination of candidates for any election.”

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