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Supreme Court reserves judgment in Kano governorship legal battle.

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After an intense legal battle lasting six hours, the Supreme Court in Abuja, on Thursday, withheld its decision in the Kano State Governorship legal dispute. The focal point of the conflict involved the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC), along with their respective governorship candidates, Kabir Yusuf and Nasiru Yusuf Gawuna.

During Thursday’s proceedings, Chief Wole Olanipekun, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), urged the Supreme Court to overturn the decisions of both the Appeal Court and the Tribunal. Olanipekun specifically implored the five-member panel of the Apex Court, led by Justice John Inyang Okoro, to determine whether the guidelines set by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) could serve as grounds for invalidating the election victory of a candidate who secured a margin exceeding 100,000 votes.

The senior lawyer contended that it was unprecedented in electoral jurisprudence for an election to be annulled based on the absence of signatures or stamps on the back of ballot papers. He argued that INEC guidelines did not anticipate the courts nullifying an election due to INEC’s alleged failure to stamp the back of ballot papers.

The legal team for the governor asserted that their client’s affiliation with the NNPP was a pre-election matter, and the Court of Appeal lacked jurisdiction to entertain it. Olanipekun expressed dissatisfaction with the judgments of the lower courts and urged the Supreme Court to overturn them.

In a counter-argument, Chief Akin Olujimi, counsel for the APC, maintained that the Electoral Act required INEC presiding officers to sign the back of ballot papers after the conclusion of the election for them to be considered legal. Olujimi stated that the tribunal’s findings revealed that the ballot papers were not signed or dated, leading to the cancellation of the election where these ballots were used.

Regarding party membership, Olujimi argued that the NNPP membership register did not list Abba Yusuf’s name. INEC’s counsel, Abubakar Balarabe Mahmoud, supported Olanipekun’s arguments, asserting that the decisions of the lower courts were flawed.

After hearing arguments from all parties, Justice Okoro reserved judgment on the governor’s appeal. The tribunal had previously nullified Yusuf’s election in September, citing over 160,000 invalid votes due to missing signatures and stamps on the ballot papers. The APC had contested the election outcome, alleging electoral malpractice, and the Court of Appeal later dismissed the NNPP candidate’s appeal against the tribunal’s judgment, affirming the APC candidate as the winner of the governorship poll held on March 18.

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BREAKING: Oronsaye Report: Tinubu to scrap many agencies, merge others

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President Bola Tinubu will implement some of the recommendations contained in the Oronsaye Report.

This is majorly, in order to cut the cost of governance.

This is coming 12 years after the Steve Oronsaye Panel submitted its report on restructuring and rationalising Federal government parastatals and agencies and a white paper issued two years after.

According to Bayo Onanuga, the President and the Federal Executive Council on Monday reached a decision to implement the report.

He said: “Many agencies will be scrapped and many others will be merged, to pave the way to a leaner government.”

CREDIT: DAILY POST

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‘You’re responsible for Nigeria’s economic woes’— Atiku tackles Tinubu

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Atiku Abubakar, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate in the 2023 general election, attributed Nigeria’s economic challenges to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

In a statement shared on his official social media account on Sunday, the former Vice President of Nigeria urged Tinubu to take cues from Argentina’s President Javier Milei on swiftly restoring investor confidence despite inheriting a troubled economy.

Atiku criticized Tinubu for deflecting blame onto the opposition and his predecessors, calling such actions unnecessary and shortsighted. He emphasized that market dynamics respond to concrete actions, not political rhetoric.

Drawing parallels with President Milei’s leadership in Argentina, Atiku highlighted the need for well-sequenced economic reforms. He commended Milei’s proactive approach in preparing for the post-reform challenges and ensuring the availability of mitigating measures.

Atiku contrasted Tinubu’s administration’s ad hoc and hurried reforms with Milei’s strategic sequencing. He pointed out Argentina’s lean government structure achieved through reducing ministries and privatizing state-owned enterprises, contrasting it with Nigeria’s expanding bureaucracy and excessive spending on official residences.

Atiku likened Tinubu’s administration’s approach to Nero fiddling while Rome burns, accusing him of evading substantive action and blaming the opposition for policy failures, reminiscent of characters in George Orwell’s Animal Farm.

Expressing admiration for Argentina’s reforms, Atiku suggested aligning his “Recover Nigeria Plan” with Milei’s stabilization strategy to alleviate Nigeria’s economic distress. He emphasized the need for transparent policies focused on economic revival and warned against dismissing discontent, particularly among the youth, which could manifest in protests.

The statement referred to the worsening economic conditions in Nigeria, highlighted by soaring inflation rates and high living costs, as reported by the National Bureau of Statistics, with headline inflation reaching 29.90% and food inflation at 35.42% in January 2024.

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BREAKING: Fire guts FCT Minister’s residence

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A fire broke out at the private residence of Dr. Mariya Mahmoud, the Minister of State in the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), on Sunday afternoon.

Situated at No. 9, Justice Roseline Ukeji Close in the affluent Asokoro district of Abuja, the property was reportedly completely destroyed by the blaze.

Despite prompt emergency response efforts, including the arrival of fire service personnel, nothing could be salvaged from the premises.

Mr. Austin Elemue, the Minister’s Special Adviser on Media, confirmed the incident, indicating that the cause of the fire remained unknown at the time.

Authorities have initiated an investigation to ascertain the cause of the fire.

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