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Jonathan’s ex- aide defends Buhari over alleged lopsided appointments

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Former Special Assistant to President Goodluck Jonathan on New Media, Reno Omokri  on Tuesday made a case for Buhari over the president’s alleged lopsided appointments saying appointments should be made on merit and not sectional interests.

Omokiri made the statement in his article titled As Buhari blazes the trail for merit.

Read his full article

Recently there was a big uproar about the appointments made by President Buhari. I disagreed with those who complained that the President’s appointment were lopsided.

Appointments should not be made on the basis of ethnicity, region or religion.Appointments should be made strictly on merit!

As far as I am concerned, the President can appoint all his appointees from the same state as long as they are the best Nigeria has to offer.

In 2013, Nigeria won the Africa Cup of Nations. That victory was only possible because we selected our best players.

A large proportion of the squad were from the Southeast and Southsouth including Vincent Enyeama, Austin Ejide, Chigozie Agbim, Joseph Yobo, Elderson Echiejile, Kenneth Omuero, Efe Ambrose, Azubuike Egwuekwe, Godfrey Oboabona, Mikel Obi, Reuben Gabriel, Nosa Igiebor, Obiora Nwankwo, Brown Ideye, Ogenyi Onazi, while Ejike Uzoenyi, Victor Moses, Ikechukwu Uche, Sunday Mba and Emmanuel Emenike.

Nobody complained that this squad was lopsided because we knew these were our best and if we wanted to win we had to present our best. At the end of the day they brought home the cup and that was all that mattered.

In the same vein, nobody should complain about where Buhari’s appointees come from. What we should insist on is that they are appointed on the basis of merit and that at the end of 2019 they must bring home the cup by giving Nigerians good governance that will yield tangible democracy dividends.

Nigerians are always quick to say the problem with Nigeria is corruption, but I am not so sure it is.

Corruption is a symptom of the problem but it in itself is not the problem.

Corruption is the catarrh coming out of Nigeria’s nose. If you experience catarrh you do not treat it by merely cleaning your nose. The discharge will just keep coming because you are treating the symptom not the cause.

The way to treat catarrh is by treating its root cause which is the common cold.

What is the common cold that is causing the discharge of mucous from Nigerians nose?

In my humble opinion, it is quota system and the principle of federal character.

Federal character and quota system are the root cause of corruption in Nigeria.

As long as ethnicity is the yardstick for admitting children into schools or recruiting adults into the civil service,  we will never have a merit driven system and where we do not have a merit driven system, the end result will be corruption.

President Muhammadu Buhari means well in his anti corruption battle, but if a civil servant has to report to someone who is less qualified than him and who only got his position because of quota system or federal character, his morale would be low and he will not be committed and when opportunity presents itself to be corrupt, that civil servant will seize it and he will not feel sorry or guilty.

As long as there is no level playing field in Nigeria, none of our anti corruption efforts will work. We will merely be cleaning rye discharge of mucous from our nose. There cannot be a successful anti corruption war in the midst of social injustice.

Nigerians are not by nature correct. It is the Nigerian system that is by nature corrupt.

The other day the Federal Ministry of Education released cut off marks for unity schools and the cut off Mark for one state is 138 out of 200 while the cut off mark for another state is 4 out of 200.

This is not a joke! This is a reality in modern day Nigeria in the year 2015 and I kid you not!

Right there and then Nigeria has planted the seed of corruption in the heart of the child from the 138/200 state and the seed of entitlement in the heart of the child from the 4/200 state.

Any system that is not built on merit cannot but be corrupt. It is a fact of life and those who do not like this inconvenient truth can get as angry as they like with me and people like me, but that will not change the truth.

Whether we like to say it or not or whether we choose to pretend it does not exist, the truth remains that so many groups in Nigeria feel alienated by quota system and federal character.

We have grand plans as a nation of being amongst the top 20 biggest economies of the world by 2020, but which of the countries amongst the current top 20 economies has a system like ours?

The answer is none.

The G 7 nations of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States along with their partner nations of China and Russia are constantly competing with each other in the areas of early childhood to high school education.

If the educational pass rates of children in America is slipping when compared to that of other nations in the G-7, it will become a major electoral issue.

The influential Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) releases a regular triennial study of global education systems and these nations keenly compete to outdo each other in these rankings.

Now, how can Nigeria expect to join their ranks and compete internationally when we do not even allow fair competition domestically?

Are we going to write a letter to the G-7 or the OECD telling them that is not fair to expect us to compete with them and ask them to lower the standards for us?

I don’t think so!

Merit is the way. No, I take that back. Merit is the ONLY way. And I thank God that we have a President with the foresight to base his appointments solely on merit.

That is a beginning, now we must ensure that merit is also applied to admission into government schools and recruitments into the public service.

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POLITICS

Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour emerges Labour Party guber candidate in Lagos

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Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour has emerged as Labour Party guber candidate in Lagos.

He polled 111 votes to defeat his opponent Mashood Salvador in the just concluded Labour Party substitution primary on Wednesday.

Mr Salvador could only muster 102 votes.

Mr Rhodes, 39, left the Peoples Democratic Party last month to join the Labour Party to fulfil him ambition of running for the governorship of Lagos State. 

Football transfer expert, Fabrizio Romano, tweeted on Thursday morning: “Chelsea are working on many different deals. Talks on with intermediaries of Wesley Fofana deal, after two bids rejected; Pierre Aubameyang discussed as option since last week but no proposal to Barça yet.

“New bid expected soon for Inter’s 2003 born talent Cesare Casadei.”

Mr Salvador, his competitor had also defected the All Progressive Congress, APC last month as well.

Meanwhile, former state party chairman, Ifagbemi Awamaridi who had initially won the gubernatorial ticket of the party when the primaries were held months ago vowed to not let go of his ticket since he is recognised by the INEC as the flag bearer.

Labour Party hierarchy however insists Mr Awamaridi was just a placeholder who had withdrawn from the party’s candidature via a letter.

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Sen. Dariye may pick Labour Party nomination form after prison release

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A former governor of Plateau State, Senator Joshua Dariye may declare interest to contest the Plateau Central senatorial seat on the platform of the Labour Party (LP). 

Dariye; former Taraba governor, Jolly Nyame, and three others were, on Monday released from prison three months after their pardon by the Council of State led by President Muhammadu Buhari, on April 14, 2022. 

Dariye, who was serving 10 years’ imprisonment for N1.126 billion fraud, was released after about four years in prison. 

It was gathered from credible sources that the Plateau State chapter of LP has concluded arrangements to receive the former Plateau governor from Abuja to pick the party’s senatorial form. 

Dariye, who served as Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governor, defected from the party. He contested and won a senatorial seat in 2011 on the platform of LP.

A Labour Party official, who preferred not to be named, said: “Yes, it is true that he (Dariye) will be running for a Senate seat. We are making arrangements for him to come from Abuja for the senatorial declaration.”

The source said Dariye would spring surprises at the polls because he remained loved by many in the state.

The party official said that Dariye was “still very popular and relevant in Plateau Central in spite of his ordeals.

Dariye’s homecoming, the source said, has also given a boost to the governorship bid of the party’s governorship candidate, Patrick Dakum, who defected to the Labour Party, after failing to secure the ticket of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).

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POLITICS

Call your supporters to order, Tinubu tells Obi

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The Tinubu Campaign Organisation has appealed to the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Mr. Peter Obi to call his supporters to order and to allow this election circle to be about issues that will advance the growth, progress and stability of Nigeria.

In a statement by its Director of Media and Communications, Mr Bayo Onanuga, the TCO admonished the Labour Party presidential candidate to get his supporters to desist from spreading lies, malice and denigrating other candidates, especially Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

TCO further states that Nigeria will be better for it and the electoral process will be enriched if the 2023 presidential campaign sticks to issues of good governance that will lift millions of Nigerians out of poverty rather than being dominated by the ravings of guttersnipes, who do not wish the country well.

Mr. Onanuga noted that the Tinubu Campaign Organisation saw the need to appeal to Mr. Obi to rein in his supporters after investigating the origin of the fake report claiming that the Ghanaian President, Nana Akufo-Addo wrote a letter to the All Progressives Congress Presidential Candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, asking him to support Peter Obi and take care of his health.

President of Ghana via his official Twitter account has vehemently debunked the fake news as a product of deliberate mischief with the intent to deceive the public.

“I have written no such letter to the APC leader, and it will not occur to me to do so. Ghana and Nigeria boast of decades of cordial, strong and brotherly relations, and I am not going to be the one to interfere in the internal affairs and politics of Nigeria,” said President of Ghana via Twitter.

“We have found that the fake news about Akufo-Addo’s letter was first published on June 22 by a rogue platform, whose url reads as worlsnews.space (sic) and site identity as World of News.

“A content analysis of the site clearly showed that it is a Biafra news platform. The fake news was reposted on Facebook by Peter Obi Support Group, same day – a clear proof that Biafra campaigners and Peter Obi supporters are the same.

“Both the Facebook account and the website are replete with fake stories about Bola Tinubu, including a fake story credited to former governor Akinwunmi Ambode, alleging that Tinubu demanded N50billion monthly payment from him. The spuriousness of the statement is in the evidence that Lagos did not begin to clock N50billion revenue until after Ambode left office. Tinubu could not have demanded N50billion monthly payment from Ambode when the state government didn’t make such in a month throughout the tenure of Mr. Ambode.

“The pirate website, which the Facebook account feeds on also parades malicious fake news and headlines such as “ I am old, but my blood is young, please vote for me – Tinubu begs youth” .

“There is also the most wicked of all headlines: When I became president, I will Build more prison (sic) for Igbo’s and IPOB members – Tinubu”.

“The big surprise in all of these is that all the headlines have no supporting stories, and clicking them may bring virus to your computer.

“We have come to a point where it becomes imperative to tell Mr. Obi to show leadership and disavow his supporters who are employing fake news and disinformation as deliberate tools to deceive and poison the minds of unsuspecting Nigerians,” Mr. Onanuga reiterated.

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