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#EndSARS Panel: Sanwo-Olu lacks power to probe police, military: Festus Keyamo

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Festus Keyamo, Minister of State for Labour, says Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu lacks the power to probe the atrocities of the police and army concerning the Lekki Tollgate massacre, police brutality and extortion. 

“For me, that panel was an illegal panel. It is totally illegal. All lawyers who are listening to me should go back and read the Tribunal of Inquiry Act of Lagos state,” stated the APC minister.

“The policemen, the armed forces, the military are not officers of Lagos state. They are officers of the federal government,” asserted Mr Keyamo, citing provisions of the 1999 Constitution (as amended). 

He added, “By virtue of the constitution, it is only the federal government that can control the conduct of policemen and the military. Lagos state cannot be in control, cannot legislate too regarding police matters and military matters.”

Mr Keyamo, while speaking during an interview with Channels TV, argued that the Lagos panel lacked the power to investigate the conduct of police and military officers.

The panel’s report had indicted the Nigerian soldiers of carrying out a massacre against peaceful and unarmed young protesters.

He added, “It says that the governor will have power to inquire into the conduct of any person and chieftaincy matters and any matter that would promote the good of the public.”

The minister argued that the state only has the power to investigate its public officers within its legislative purview.

Mr Keyamo, who tried to distance the federal government from his viewpoint, said he was speaking as a legal practitioner, adding that his opinion did not represent President Muhammadu Buhari regime’s view.

His comments came a few weeks after the judicial panel’s report established that the army killed at least 11 protesters and took their bodies away.

Last week, information minister Lai Mohammed said the panel’s report that probed the aftermath of the October 2020 military shooting of protesters in Lekki should be disregarded as fake, insisting there was no massacre.

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo had, in the wake of the #EndSARS protests, announced that states, including the FCT, would set up judicial panels to look into the crisis.

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Ogun Assembly summons LG officials over alleged financial infractions, abuse of office

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Ogun house of assembly

Ogun state House of Assembly has summoned some officials of the state’s Local government council commission over allegations of financial infractions and abuse of office.

The Assembly summoned the officials after it received an audit report on the commission by the assembly’s Committee on Public Accounts and Anti-corruption.

After its Plenary on Friday, the commitee directed the Permanent Secretary of the commission to formally communicate it’s summon to the officials indicted in the audit report.

The committee audited activities of all 20 Local Government Councils from 2014-2019.

The Committee summoned one retired Mrs. F.O Odebiyi and a former Chairman of the defunct Sagamu South LCDA, Barr. Hassan Olugbenga to appear before the lawmakers on Thursday, February 3rd, 2022 to explan financial infractions allegedly committed while in office.

READ ALSO: Ogun Assembly confirms commissioner nominee

The Chairman of the committee, Hon. Musefiu Lamidi disclosed that the committee had discovered a trend of illicit practices perpetrated by some officials including non attachment of supporting documents to payment vouchers and the use of unqualified officials as conduit pipes to siphon council funds.

“The commitee also discovered nugatory payments, improper signing of payment vouchers and self procurements by some council chairmen amongst others which were against financial regulations, hence the need to prevent the re-occurence with a view to sustaining transparency in the running of the councils,” he said.

The Committee also reaffirmed its invitation to all Heads of Local Government Administration (HOLGAs), Treasurers and Directors, General Services and Administrations as well as Internal Auditors in all the Local Government councils for an interactive session on Wednesday, 16th February, 2022.

By Oluwatobi Odeyinka

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IPOB warns Asari Dokubo over comments against Kanu

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Asari Dokubo

Proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) has warned former Niger Delta militant leader, Asari Dokubo, to mind his utterances and comments against their incarcerated leader, Nnamdi Kanu.

The Igbo separatist group took exception to recent disparaging comments credited to the founder of the Niger Delta People’s Volunteer Force against Kanu and the Biafra cause, cautioning him to mind what he says as he is neither a member of IPOB nor a Biafran.

In the past few weeks, Asari Dokubo has been in the forefront of those urging the Federal Government not to release Kanu, claiming that the Biafra agitator had been instigating violence and killings in the South-East.

But in a statement issued by IPOB’s Media and Publicity Secretary on Friday, the group said it never declared war on Dokubo as he had been claiming, and would be held responsible if any IPOB member died in the coastal areas or hinterlands.

In the statement made available to Ripples Nigeria, IPOB accused Dokubo of sabotaging the Biafra agitation and efforts because of his hatred for Kanu.

“We the global movement and family of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) under the command and leadership of our great leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, wish to put the whole world on notice, particularly the Izon people, of the unguarded and nonsense statements coming out from Asari Dokubo against the people of IPOB and our leader because when it will starts, nobody should blame us.

“Asari Dokubo numerated how he sabotaged and planned how our leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, was abducted and extraordinarily renditioned from Kenya to Nigeria.

“Asari Dokubo should know that he is not an Igbo man, and should stop portraying himself so. Igbos believe in equity and justice and Igbos don’t need a traitor like Asari Dokubo.

READ ALSO: IPOB warns of fake Biafran media groups allegedly sponsored by Nigerian govt

“Asari Dokubo should equally remember that IPOB never declared war against him since he started his nonsense statements against IPOB and Nnamdi Kanu. We don’t want to be distracted or join issues with him.

“But we want to make it categorically clear to him that if any IPOB member, both in the hinterland and coastal region of Biafra, dies as a result of his threats, he will understand what IPOB is capable of doing.

“Again, we want him to withdraw his empty threats and stop exposing his historical shortcomings and ignorance by dabbling into a century that he has completely no idea about. Asari Dokubo is not an Igbo and has no link with the Igbo people.

“Igbos don’t need Asari to live their lives. Asari should know that he doesn’t, and can never love Igbo people more than Nnamdi Kanu and IPOB movement.

“Asari Dokubo should know that his sabotage of the Biafran struggle will not stop us from getting Biafran freedom. His grouse with Nnamdi Kanu was because he was more interested in becoming the President of Biafra, and he was told to wait first until Biafra comes.

“He turned against Kanu and Biafra freedom because he hates the truth. Asari thinks that his criminal gangs sponsored by Aso Rock and some politicians in the region will kill IPOB members and blame it on Igbo people. We know who he is and he will soon regret his actions against a just cause,” the statement added.

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INEC assures disabled persons of priority voting rights

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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has assured Persons With Disabilities (PWDs) of unhindered access in exercising their franchise in the February 12 Federal Capital Territory (FCT) area councils’ elections.

The INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) FCT, Yahaya Bello, gave the assurance on Friday,  in his remarks at a one day sensitisation meeting with PWDs toward an Inclusive Area Council Elections in FCT, organised by INEC.

Mr Yahaya, represented by the Deputy Director, ServiCom INEC FCT, Dennis Ogu, said that INEC having taken into consideration the electoral rights of every citizen, had continued to strive to remove barriers which prohibited full participation of PWDs as voters and candidates.

“The commission has therefore put in place several measures to ensure that persons with disabilities are included in the electoral process in the country.

“Therefore, in the forthcoming area council election, the commission will be providing Braille Ballot Guide and/or magnifying glasses for visually impaired persons.

“Special queues will also be maintained on the election day to give priority to the persons with disabilities to cast their ballots with dignity and privacy.

“Other measures will be explained to you by relevant departments in the course of this meeting,” Mr Bello said.

The REC said the sensitisation meeting was organised to ensure that every registered voter in FCT, including PWDs exercised their civic rights in the election without hindrance or inhibition.

(NAN)

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