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You can’t make policy on open grazing, Akeredolu replies Presidency

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Ondo State governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, yesterday picked holes in the presidency’s position on the ban on open grazing by governors of the southern extraction.

Specifically, Akeredolu who is chairman of the Southern Governors’ forum noted that the senior special assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on media and publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu, lacks the authority to make policy statements for the federal government unless directed.

The presidential spokesperson had on Monday stated that it is very obvious that the governors had no solution to offer from their resolutions to the herder-farmer clashes that have lingered in the country for generations.

Shehu said it was “equally true that their (Southern governors’) announcement is of questionable legality, given the Constitutional right of all Nigerians to enjoy the same rights and freedoms within every one of our 36 states (and FCT) -regardless of the state of their birth or residence.”

But apparently miffed by the presidency’s assertion, Akeredolu warned Shehu and “his cohorts” to desist from hurling insults at elected representatives of the people, noting vehemently that the presidential aide must unveil the actual intentions of those he serves, who he said are definitely not the president.

Reacting to the statement, Governor Akeredolu who spoke through his senior special assistant on Special Duties, Doyin Odebowale, said, “Anyone who has been following the utterances of this man, as well as his fellow travelers on the self-deluding, mendacious but potentially dangerous itinerary to anarchy, cannot but conclude that he works, assiduously, for extraneous interests.

“Their game plan stands at variance with the expectations of genuine lovers of peaceful coexistence among all the peoples whose ethnic extractions are indigenous to Nigeria.

“The declaration that the recommendations of the Minister of Agriculture, Alhaji Sabo Nanono, a mere political appointee like Garba Shehu, are now the “lasting solutions” which eluded all the elected representatives of the people of the Southern part of the country, exposes this man as a pitiable messenger who does not seem to understand the limits of his relevance and charge.”

Casting doubt on the relationship between shehu’s comments and the president’s true position, the governor said, “Mr. Garba Shehu just released a press statement purporting to represent the position of President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR, on the farmer-herder “clashes” and what he termed as “Deep Rooted Solutions to the herdsmen attacks.

“He also attributed a unilateral decision to the President who “clears the way for ranching and revival of forest reserves” as part of the “permanent solution to the frequent clashes between them, as well as the associated problem of the gun-wielding “killer-herdsmen”.

Akeredolu further noted that while Shehu wants to “revive forest reserves,” he “seems particularly uninterested in the current position of the same law that he and his cohorts often misinterpret to serve parochialism and greed.”

He continued: “Governors no longer have powers over the lands in their territories. They must take instructions from appointees of the Federal Government on such matters.

“It is superfluous, and that is being charitable, for anyone to remind us of the constitutional right of bona fide citizens “to enjoy rights and freedoms within every one of our 36 States (and FCT)-regardless of their state of birth and residence.

“There has never been any contention on this provision. Mr. Garba seems to have issues understanding the difference between licentious criminality and qualified rights under our law. We must continually nudge him off his current state of cognitive dissonance. His pronouncement betrays dubiety and mischief.

“Most traditional families in Nigeria have occupations. Pastoralism is not an exception. Any ethnic group still trapped in anachronism may be assisted to embrace modernity.

“Dispossessing communities of their ancestral lands, encouraging denizens of the forests to overrun lands belonging to other people and forcing alien bands of migrants on the local populace to live “side-by-side” with other communities cannot be for animal husbandry. It raises suspicion on a grand, deliberate, persistent, and insidious design to use naked force to subjugate the real owners of the land. Mr. Garba Shehu is a major supporter of the current pervasive anarchy in the land.

“His acts are those of an agent provocateur. Other closet dreamers, aspirers to colonial fantasies, must be weaned off their delusion.

“No inch of the space delineated and known, currently, as South West, and indeed the whole South will be ceded to a band of invaders masquerading as herdsmen under any guise.”

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Another Lagos LGA chairman dies

Hon. Olufunmi Rafiu Olatunji, Chairman of Eti-Osa East Local Council Development Area in Lagos is dead

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Chairman of Eti-Osa East Local Council Development Area in Lagos Hon. Olufunmi Rafiu Olatunji is dead.

Olatunji died on Monday night.
It was gathered Olatunji had been battling with illness before his death.

He will be buried in accordance with Islamic rites today at his residence in Sangotedo, Ajah, Lagos.

Before his demise, he was seeking re-election on the platform of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).

He emerged winner in the APC local government primary election with 1977 votes to become the party’s candidate in the forthcoming July 24th election.

Confirming his death, his Media Team on Tuesday morning in a Facebook post said: “With sorrow in our heart but in total submission to the will of Almighty Allah (S. W. T), we announce the passing, after a long battle with illness, our dear father, brother, friend, confidant, role model, Nation-builder, Hon. Olufunmi Rafiu Olatunji.

“He was until late night of Monday 21st June, 2021 the Executive Chairman of Eti-Osa East Local Council Development Area, Eti-Osa Local Government.

“He will be buried in accordance to Islamic rite by 9 am prompt at his residence in Sangotedo, Ajah, Lagos. We invite you to join us in paying the last respect to our beloved father, brother, friend and Boss.

“We are confident that Almighty Allah will grant him Al Jannah Firdaus.”

In a terse statement, chairman of Lagos Mainland Local Government, Hon. Mrs Omolola Essien expressed sadness over his sudden demise.

She said: “We commiserate with his family, friends, colleagues and staff of Eti-Osa Local Council development Area and pray against such unfortunate deaths in our fold.

“And On behalf of the good people of Lagos Mainland Local Government Areas, I want to express my heartfelt condolences to the Conference 57 Chairmen, his family and pray that The Good Lord grants the people he left behind the fortitude to bear the loss and make paradise his final abode.”

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Lagos Assembly passes LASIEC Amendment Bill

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The Lagos State House of Assembly has passed the State Independent Electoral Commission, LASIEC (Amendment) Bill, 2021 for passage into Law.

Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa on Monday, passed the bill Having gone through its first, second and third reading at the plenary.

Obasa stated that: “The Election process of the Local Government and LASIEC which has started with the Parties contesting for the position is possibly affecting the tenure of the existing LASIEC Officials and the State needs to be on the safe side, hence, the need to look at the laws and amend where necessary to protect the effort of the Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission.

“The Intended Bill will empower the Governor to elongate the tenure of the officials of LASIEC and I think the six month proposed is too wide in this consideration because we need to be ahead in order to protect the State, so I proposed three month.”

The Chairman of the Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights, Public Petitions and LASIEC, Victor Akande, stressed that the amendment being proposed was needed to ensure the Bill gets the necessary backing in order to stand the test of time.

Akande stated: “Only a singular fraction of the Bill is amended; the Bill also seeks to give the Governor the leverage to be able to use his power in case the tenure lapses. It is a good amendment in the right direction.”

Other members who made contributions, noted that the proposed amendment is a worthy one because the House and its democratic dispensation must ensure that it abides by the rule of Law.

The only addition is subsection 2 of the extant Law which provides for legislation that will necessitate the extension of the tenure of the Electoral Commission to perform it duties is however proposed to be amended since the Constitution states that no part of the people from the Commission shall administer themselves as democratically elected among the selection in the electoral process.

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DSS releases Kano singer detained for Blasphemy

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The Department of State Services (DSS) has released an Islamic singer, Ahmad Abdul, taking into custody after releasing a blasphemous song.

DailyTrust reports that Abdul was picked by the security agents for releasing the uncensored song titled ‘Barhama Gwaska’, perceived as blasphemous and capable of creating chaos in the state. The DSS had said it took the singer into protective custody to avert likely violent reactions against him from Kano residents.

While in detention, Abdul tendered an apology to the entire Muslim community, Kano state government, and Islamic scholars.

Confirming his release from custody today June 21, the Executive Secretary of Kano State Films and Video Censorship Board, Ismaila Na’abba Afakallah, said he had received hundreds of petitions against the song from concerned citizens. Afakallah said he reported the singer to the DSS which later arrested him at a hotel where he had been hiding for days to save him from the mob.

“He has been released as he regretted and apologised over his offence, promising not to repeat it” Afakallah said

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