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Twists in former Ekiti Speaker’s return bid to PDP

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Bamisile, who as PDP state Deputy Chairman, dumped the PDP for APC few days to the 2014 gu­bernatorial election in the state, alongside two notable APC members held a meeting with Ekiti State governor, prominent PDP members and some traditional rulers at a ho­tel in Ado Ekiti on Sun­day, where news filtered out that the gubernatorial aspirant might have re­joined the PDP.

But just as Bamisile stated on Monday that the governor, who came into his meeting with the monarchs, had begged him to return to the PDP, dangling the PDP gover­norship ticket before him, Bamisile’s friend,

Mr Bo­laji Jeje, said yesterday that he was the one that, at Bamisile’s pleading, bro­kered a meeting between the governor and the for­mer Speaker.

Bamisile, who said his activities in APC had put PDP under pressure, had said: “Indeed I had a meet­ing with the traditional rulers where Governor Fayose joined. He said I would be given the ticket of the PDP if I return to his party and held my legs, begging that the kings should plead with me.

“I snubbed and immedi­ately left him in the room because I think it was unhealthy for our politi­cal system, if we soil the hands of our traditional rulers with the dirty mud of politics.”

But Jeje, who said he brokered the meeting in Ado Ekiti on Sunday, said Bamisile’s claim that the governor begged him to return to the PDP was “a shameless lie”.

He said yesterday that the former Speaker ap­proached him to broker his return to PDP, clarify­ing that he and Bamisile met with the governor at Eko Hotel in Lagos on Monday last week.

Jeje said: “As a friend, I feel very disappointed in Bamisile. Here is some­one who came to me in Efon Alaaye to plead that I should facilitate his meet­ing with Governor Fayose.

“After we discussed at Efon Alaaye, I told Gov­ernor Fayose, who told me pointedly that Femi cannot be trusted. But because of the way he (Bamisile) spoke to me, I persuaded the governor to give him audience and we both met with the gover­nor at Eko Hotel on Mon­day, August 17.

“We were together in Eko Hotel till around 3 am and I challenge Bamisile to deny these facts. It was at the Eko Hotel meeting that the meeting held on Sunday was agreed upon, with the governor insist­ing that traditional rulers must be part of the meet­ing and it must be made known to the press.

“Bamisile was the one who begged Governor Fayose at the Eko Hotel meeting and the agree­ment reached was for him (Bamisile) to return to PDP this week because he said he was going to travel abroad next week Monday.

“I am therefore shocked and disappointed that Bamisile could go to town, lying that it was Governor Fayose that begged him to return to PDP.

“As a friend, who meant well for him, it will be hon­ourable for him to retract that statement and come before the public to admit that he actually sought my intervention to pave way for his return to PDP.”

But Bamisile, in a re­sponse to the allegation, said Jeje was being used by the governor to scan­dalise and rubbish his im­age, saying: “Though Jeje is my friend, but under this context, he is being used against me by the government.

“I left the party when Dr Goodluck Jonathan was the President. This is almost a year that Fay­ose got into office. Those who wanted to contest or elected have virtually got everything. If I should join, what would he give me now?

“I have said it repeat­edly that I can’t work with Fayose. What is my gain in going to the PDP, a party that is not at the federal?

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NAHCON screens 7 airlines for 2022 hajj

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NAHCON

The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) has commenced the screening of airlines that would participate in the airlift of the pilgrims.

No fewer than seven airlines have indicated an interest in the airlift.

They are Azman Air, Med-View Airline, Max Air, FlyNas, Skypower Express, Westlink Airlines and Arik Air.

Out of the seven airlines, six are domestic operators while FlyNas is a Saudi based airline.

It was gathered that the screening exercise would be a verification of the documents of the interested carriers that turned up in 2020 following the call from NAHCON.

The airlines were already screened in 2020 before the Hajj exercise was cancelled due to the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“They are using the 2020 template but we were only asked to validate our documents,” one of the airlines participating in the verification exercise confirms to our correspondent.

It was not clear yet if NAHCON would apply the same rule which would give over 50 per cent of the traffic to Saudi Airlines which stakeholders in the aviation sector have consistently kicked against.

When contacted, the NAHCON spokesperson, Hajia Fatima Sanda Usara, confirmed that there was an arrangement in place to use the 2020 screening exercise.

She said the screening committee had just been inaugurated to verify the documents of the Air carriers.

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Deborah Samuel: Adeboye postpones RCCG crusade in Sokoto

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Pastor Enoch Adeboye has postponed the crusade scheduled to hold in Sokoto following the tension over Deborah Samuel’s murder.

The deceased was a 200-level Home Economics student of the Shehu Shagari College of Education.

Last Thursday, she was beaten, stoned and burnt by Muslim youths who accused her of blasphemy.

In a Facebook post Monday night, Adeboye announced the shift of the planned religious event which now holds virtually.

The Redeemed Christan Church of God (RCCG) General Overseer, however, noted that God is able to fix all situations.

Adeboye, who conveyed his message in parable, quoted Richard Halverson, the late American Presbyterian minister who served as United States Senate chaplain.

Halverson had said intercession is the universal work for Christians and that no continent, nation, city, office nor power can stop prayers.

“Postponed but God turned it around. We Trust In Our God’s Big Picture Plan!”, Adeboye wrote.

The Christian leader insisted believers serve a God who specialises in using the impossible situation for His glory.

Adeboye noted that if in doubt, they should look closely at the death and resurrection of Jesus.

“Devil thought he killed Him, but His death and resurrection resulted into life for many. He keeps turning it around for our good. It is in this might that we proceed”, he added.

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Deborah Samuel: Gov Tambuwal relaxes curfew

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Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State government has relaxed the 24-hour curfew he imposed on the state capital following violent protest over the arrest of some youths allegedly involved in the killing Deborah Samuel, a 200-level student.

Tambuwal in a statement issued by his Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Isah Bajini, said the revised curfew will now be from dusk to dawn in Sokoto township.

The statement noted that “Sequel to the briefing by the security heads in the State, the State Governor, Rt Hon Aminu Waziri Tambuwal has ordered the relaxation of the 24-hour curfew in force in Sokoto metropolis

“The revised curfew will now be from dusk to dawn in Sokoto township. This is with a view to affording people the window to pursue their legitimate businesses and other means of livelihood.”

Recall that following the lynching of the 200-level student for allegedly insulting Prophet Mohammed, the State’s police command arrested some persons linked to the incident.

However, a large number of Muslim boys who were angered by the arrest, stormed the streets in the State on Saturday, demanding the release of the suspects.

The development, which triggered tension in several parts of the State, made the Governor to impose the curfew.

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