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Destruction of PDP billboards may trigger crisis – Ortom

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Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, on Saturday condemned the destruction of campaign billboards mounted by the Peoples Democratic Party in parts of Gboko.

Hoodlums had on Friday pulled down campaign billboards of Governor Samuel Ortom that were placed in strategic places in Gboko town.

Some of the billboards destroyed had no pictures of the presidential candidate of the PDP, Alhaji Abubakar Atiku, but were adorned with pictures of the governor, as senatorial candidate and Titus Uba, the party governorship candidate

Gboko is the traditional political seat of Tiv nation where the National Chairman of PDP, Senator Iyorchia Ayu, hails from.

Condemning the act, Ortom said such act was capable of triggering avoidable crisis in the area and sued for caution on the part of party supporters.

In the statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Terver Akase, the governor noted that no individual or group had the right to pull down campaign materials of political opponents, no matter the circumstances.

The governor said democracy guaranteed the freedom of participation to everyone and no individual had the constitutional authority to intimidate or harass others.

“He (Ortom) states that the introduction of electronic voting has strengthened the country’s electoral system and anyone who is confident about his chances at the polls should canvass for votes among the people rather than attacking other contestants.

“Governor Ortom urges security operatives to investigate the incidents in Gboko and bring those responsible to justice, to serve as a deterrent to others.

But in a swift reaction, the media aide to Reverend Father Hyacinth Alia, the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress governorship candidate, Kula Tersoo, who exonerated the opposition party, described the destruction of the billboards as ‘PDP family affair’.

Tersoo said that the party (PDP) should look inward and investigate the matter, adding that information at their disposal indicated that the destruction was carried out by their members who felt aggrieved that Atiku’s pictures were not on those billboards.

He said, “Go to Yandev Roundabout, you will see that the billboards there which carried pictures of their presidential candidate; Atiku Abubakar is standing in that picture.

“You ask them (PDP) if anything happened to their billboards in other areas they had been campaigning such as; Vandeikya, Logo, Katsina-Ala and others.

“But Gboko is the home of Senator Iyorchia Ayu and I read a post of one of the PDP members who is from there who said that in Gboko, any billboard without Atiku will be pulled down. So, count us (APC) out of their internal crisis.”

Speaking on the matter, the Commissioner of Police, Benue State, Wale Abass, directed all Area Commanders and Divisional Police Officers to ensure that no political campaign posters or billboards are destroyed.

In a statement issued by the command spokesperson, SP, Catherine Anene warned against any act that does not happen within their areas of responsibility.

The CP also called on political party executives to recall that on 9/12/2022, they had a peace pact that was signed and stated therein that peace would be maintained throughout the electoral period.

The statement read in parts, “The CP calls on party executives to warn their subjects to desist from such acts. Meanwhile, party executives will also be held responsible if they fail to provide their subjects who are perpetuating this barbaric act.”

 

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APC declares Ondo primary inconclusive

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The All Progressives Congress 2024 Governorship Primary Committee in Ondo State has declared the Saturday primary inconclusive.

This is contained in a statement by the Chairman of the Committee, Gov. Usman Ododo on Sunday morning.

The statement said that rerun election would take place in all the 13 wards of Okitipupa Local Government with total validated registered party members of 9,515.

“Having received reports of the primary election from the 203 Wards in the 18 Local Governments of Ondo State, the Primary Election Committee has decided that election will be conducted in all the 13 Wards of Okitipupa Local Government with total validated registered members of 9,515.

“ We have validated reports that the exercise did not hold in the local government due to late arrival of electoral materials and personnel as a result of logistics challenges.

“Election in Okitipupa Local Government shall be conducted 12 noon on Sunday 21st April 2024.

“The final collation of the results will be done thereafter”, the statement said.

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Over 1,000 Kano APC members defect to NNPP

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Over 1,000 members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Kano State decamped to the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) on Saturday.

The decampees, from Shanono and Bagwai local government areas, were formally received by the Deputy Governor, Aminu Abdussalam Gwarzo on behalf of Governor Abba Kabir Yusuf at the Kano State Government House.

A press release by the Deputy Governor’s spokesperson, Ibrahim Garba Shuaibu stated Gwarzo’s delight in welcoming the defectors.

He emphasized that the NNPP prioritized unity and that all members will be treated equally.

According to Garba, Gwarzo reiterated the administration’s commitment to implementing programs that would benefit all the people of Kano State and urged continued support from residents for the state’s progress.

Speaking earlier, Alhaji Haruna Babangida Abbas (Kosashe), leader of the defectors, cited Governor Abba’s leadership qualities and governance style as reasons for their move.

He expressed regret for their past APC affiliation and pledged their dedication to working with the NNPP for Kano’s betterment.

Also Speaking, Kano NNPP Chairman, Alhaji Hashimu Dungurawa welcomed the new members and assured their involvement in the party’s activities.

He encouraged members of other parties, including the APC, to join the NNPP for the state’s advancement.

Dungurawa also urged support for the government’s policies.

The event was attended by prominent figures, like the Kano State Commissioner for Budget and Planning, Alhaji Musa Suleiman Shanono, and several NNPP stakeholders who celebrated the influx of new members.

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Ondo APC Primary: 171,922 accredited members to vote, says committee

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The committee to supervise the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship primary in Ondo state, on Friday, said a total of 171,922 accredited members would vote on Saturday.

The primary is scheduled to hold in 203 wards in 18 local government areas with 16 aspirants including the governor, Mr Lucky Aiyedatiwa, contesting.

Sen. Ovie Omo-Agege, the Secretary of the seven-man committee, stated this after its meeting with stakeholders and aspirants on Friday night in Akure .

He said that none of the aspirants had before the eve of the exercise withdrawn or stepped down for another candidate.

The secretary said that the committee was ready to conduct the primary using  the direct mode in all the 203 wards across the state.

He appealed to the aspirants to caution their supporters to allow the peaceful conduct of the primary for the progress of the party.

Omo-Agege assured of the committee’s resolve to strictly follow the guidelines and constitution of the party and conduct a transparent, fair and credible election.

He said that the committee would collaborate with the security agencies in the state to forestall breakdown of law and order before, during and after the primary.

The committee is headed by Gov. Usman Adodo of Kogi.

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