HOME UNLABELLED EXCLUSIVE: HOW GOV, AMBODE, AREGBESOLA, VP OSIBAJO, AFIKUYOMI, OTHERS CORNERED MULTIMILLION NAIRA CHOICE PROPERTY IN LAGOS

 

 


Exclusive: How Gov, Ambode, Aregbesola, VP Osibajo, Afikuyomi, Others Cornered Multimillion Naira Choice Property In Lagos
2 HRS AGO 2 MINUTEREAD

Funmilola Tejuosho
Fresh facts have started emerging on what has been tagged illegal acquisition of a property by one of the lawmakers in Lagos State House of Assembly, Hon. Adefunmilayo Tejuoso. In fact, many tales were given to be the real cause of the invasion of her residence, 3 Sasegbon Street, GRA Ikeja, Lagos, by security operatives on the orders of Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode.

To some, she has done everything wrong by not vacating the building for other Deputy Speakers that came after her. Some others believed she has settled the issue by buying the property from the government at N150m.

However, according to the new findings, the issue that is still generating mixed feelings amongst many in the state with appellation, Centre of Excellence, is not only limited to the female lawmaker, who claimed to have bought the property from the state government through her company, Debam Mega Solutions Limited, when she was the Deputy Speaker of the Lagos House of Assembly through the monetization policy of the government.

We further gathered that no Deputy Speaker of Lagos Assembly has ever made use of the property as official quarters, two Deputy Speakers had emerged before Tejuoso became the Deputy Speaker of the House, and none of them stayed in the property.

It was one Mrs. Dawodu, a retired Permanent Secretary that was the last occupant of the premises, before Tejuoso packed him.

 

Tokunbo Afikuyomi

Aside Tejuoso, findings revealed that the likes of Governors, Ambode, Rauf Aregbesola, Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, Senator Tokunbo Afikuyomi are also beneficiaries of the monetization policy which saw them acquiring properties the way Funmi Tejuoso did.

We gathered exclusively that, aside Funmi Tejuoso, the governor of Lagos, Akinwunmi Ambode also benefitted from such privilege when he bought his house on Glover Street, Ikoyi Lagos, a prominent part of the aquatics state.

Many who are privy to this information are wondering why Governor Ambode who intends to recover government assets sold at an undervalued price cannot start with his own property

 

Gov. Ambode

Aside the governor, there are so many other top government officials who also benefitted from the monetization policy. Now, the question is: why are others being shielded from the same treatment the female lawmaker is getting at the moment.

Other top politicians who have benefited from the policy include Senator Tokunbo Afikuyomi who bought his property at 7 Oduduwa Street.

Other government officials present and past who are also beneficiaries include – Justice Atilade; Justice Akande; Dr. Muiz Banire (SAN); Dele Alake; Justice Phillips; current Commissioner for Housing, Hon. Gbolahan Lawal; APC Lagos State Chairman, Henry Olawale Ajomale, amongst others.

It, however, remain to be seen if Governor Ambode will have the political will to also go after the listed beneficiaries.

 

Meanwhile, many have continued to allude the illegal action of the governor as a pure vendetta on the lawmaker due her perceived closeness to National legal adviser of APC, Dr Muiz Banire.

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EQUALITY OR EQUITY…FEMINISM OR HUMANITY?

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I am a keen lover of the female gender. It is great delight to have them around as I am the only male in my family since my father died. I am unapologetic about my support for the female gender. I will always support the aspiration of women’s goal and aspiration.

Women are not weaklings, they are not foolish, they don’t whine. They are wise, strong and pillar of the society. They hold an important office in the growth and development of a nation. They are the custodian of values and morals. Woman; a teacher and shaper of destiny. No real man will pride himself in physically assaulting a female. No real man will abuse a woman. A matured man protects, tend and care for the woman gender. The strength of Man is in using our strength to cover up for the woman’s weakness not showcasing it.

My deep concern is when a woman begins to see herself as less. When a woman wants to be equal to the status and stature of a man using the world equality? Are we in a competition? Didn’t the maker made us help meet (collaborators)? Why then the competition for equality when you are? You don’t fight to be what you are because you are?

Anybody who have to say you don’t know who I am before you know who they are was nobody- Pastor Sam Adeyemi

Why the tussle, struggle and hassle. You are a woman, celebrate your uniqueness and stop fighting with the male gender like he is a gladiator. Stop speaking for yourself alone and expecting a man to support, rather speak for the oppressed men, children and women on the street. We were created in different capacity, male and female he created them…Please dear Queen celebrate your womanhood with a deep seen of humanity. You can never be a man; no matter how you try God will never promote you to the position of a man and vice versa.

Many ideologies have destroyed the family and society. A society where women expect merit even when they don’t merit it. A world where women can misbehave without consequences but man cannot. A world where been rude to husband is seen as romantic.

Let’s turn to statistics: Do you know 1/3 male are sexually harassed by female worldwide at work place? Do you know globally there are more tendencies a boy is abuse without help than a girl? Do you know women are crueler to women than men? Do you know it is likely a female gets help or favor under same condition than a male? Do you 2 out of 5 persons that has gone through domestic violence is male?

Is this equality? I am an advocate of gender equity. I love women; I will never beat or physically abuse a woman. I will always accord the respect a woman is due to her. If I wrong a woman I will be humble enough to apologize sincerely and all this I have always done.

Women must begin to dignify themselves than mere talk. All ye feminist, when was the last time you stood up in a bus for a pregnant or nursing mother to sit? A man is expected to stand up right? Shake my head… I think all feminist should think humanity first before feminism. Women stop looking for sympathy rather seek empathy. You are not weak…infact after the bible had called you week vessels, it called you sons. What an upgrade!

I remember a celebrity feminist pulled up media stunt with Femi Anikulapo-Kuti’s children. If you are truly a feminist you must value children. If not feminist is rubbish. Feminism without a respect for your own body and nakedness is stupidity. I remember a feminist snatched her friend’s husband. Feminist that does not respect fellow feminist is waste of time. I know lots of feminist who are rude to the leadership of their husbands at home because they are equal. This is rebellion against God. Any feminist without respect for God’s command is foolishness.

I hope women’s selfishness, being self-centered, and arrogance are not been labeled FEMINISM. Killing INEQUALITY with another INEQUALITY IS FOOLISHNESS. In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth…And God said come let us create MAN in our own IMAGE and likeness(Man is God’s image but can never be GOD)…Come let’s make him an help meet(WHY DO WOMEN WANT TO BE MEN?)…She shall be called Woman (WOMB-MAN not WOE-MAN) for out of me she was brought forth. Women you are beautiful, unique and whole, celebrate your uniqueness.

I SEE

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Come and see the glory of Africa,
The realm of joy, the reign of black gold,
The chariot of honour,
The parade of diversity,
The paragon of splendor,
My country.
The fight for survival,
The strength of the common man,
The power of numbers,
The richness of cultural heritage,
My people.
The smile deeper than agony,
The sweat of hardwork,
The pleasure of the ages,
The religion faithful,
My Shelter.
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Strong, beautiful tent of mahogany
See her tiptoeing into greatness white,
See her catwalk into royal purple,
See her breastfeed her child in love blue,
See her farm land harvest green.
See, across the Nile she stands out
Like the Iroko shades of an Arugba in the grove of the goddess Osun.
My country! oh my country!!
The true beauty of Africa,
The roaring aquatic splendor of the Atlantic.
tallest-statue-in-nigeria-2
The tale of Queen Sheba; Oloye Bilikisu of Ijebu
The bravery of Queen Amina of Zarie
The wisdom of Moremi of Ile-Ife
The bleeding and loving heart of motherhood.
Peace of kolanut from the Ibos,
Parading Durbar of the Hausas,
Tranquility of Olojo from the Yorubas,
Nigeria!!!
I see Nigeria leap frog,
I see Nigeria eagle soar,
I see Nigeria kingship coronation,
I see great Nigeria.
I see laundering laundered into integrity,
I see greed ground into empathy
I see illiterates refined into intellectual responsible,
I see great Nigeria.
Abundance in the gaff of former beggars,
Equity and justice in the corrupt court rooms,
Honesty by bribe thirsty law enforcement agents,
I see the old shout on the hills in ecstasy,
I see the young lead in her palaces,
The charavans from Europe, Asia, and around Africa land at MMA1 in awesome of our transformation.
Sanity on the street of Lagos I see,
Love in the forest of Sambisa I see,
Equality on the Niger bridge I see,
Do you see? I see
River-Niger
Speed of Light rail from Kano to Tincan Island,
Uninterrupted power from Apomu to Gauro,
Royal ride flight from Dakkada city to Newyork city on Nigerian Falcon,
Food basket of Africa I see.
Dakkada-logo-dakkada-creed-akwa-ibom-udom-emmanuel-governor.png
Diligent hands at work in public service,
Extravagant wealth creation in the private sphere,
Meticulous fist clean the public space,
Creative brains building tech innovation,
This is my prayer that one day I see all I see with my eyes.
Written by Akinnike Michael Oluwatobiloba

My goddess

 

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LOVE EXTRAORDINARY

CARE EXTRAVAGANT

WARMTH UNFORGETTABLE

VALUE UNNEGOTIABLE

FAITH SUPERNATURAL

PAIN OF MOTHERHOOD

TEARS OF SUPPLICATION

HEART OF FORGIVENESS

MELODY OF INTEGRITY

SHOW OF RESILIENCE

QUEEN TO HER HUBBY

SILIENCE OF EFFECTUAL PRAYERS

EYES OF WISDOM

BEAUTY IN ATTITUDE

DESCRIPTION BEYOND SPEECH

IDOL TO HER SON

MODEL TO HER DAUGHTERS

MY goddess SHE IS.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY ADENIKE AKINNIKE.

10 things you did not know about my mother; Adenike Akinnike

 

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  • She is the least read among her sibling but she gave and sacrificed all to help 2 out of 4 of her siblings to become graduates. She did this through salary she got has a house girl sleeping under the stair-case when she arrived Lagos.

 

  • She had been a victim of love before she met my father the love of her life. She got married in court to a man who needed certificate of marriage to get a visa to travel without knowing it.

 

  • She learned knitting in her twenties reluctantly because her grandfather told to. Knitting paid our school fees after my father died.

 

  • She was a devoted catholic before she turned Pentecostal Apostolic. My mum has a deep love for her catholic background and became Pentecostal Apostolic because of the love and care my God father and Mother; Pastor (DR) M.F. Olumbo showed her after her purported husband escaped.

 

  • My mum washed toilet as a service to God when she was barren. My mum has to wait 8 years after her first issue. I was told she cried because she was scorned by many for having 8 years delay. Infact, she was almost raped by an elder in church and another elder proposed extramarital affair to help her out of her challenge. She conceived after many prayers and cleaning the church toilets.
  • My mum got married to my father as a celestial member but with consistent good character and attitude it took my father 14 years to get converted to Pentecostal Apostolic. No wonder the sight of incense, candle and Miss Paris was frequent in our house while I was growing up.

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  • My mum is a wonderful entrepreneur. She has always been a successful entrepreneur even when she was working at John Holt plc. She sold bread, made sweaters, sold pure-water, made Ice-cream and tasty-time.

 

  • My mum had died but prayer brought her back to life. My mum after her surgical operation on hemorrhage, she died but the family gathered round her and prayed. This was the days I learned about effective and effectual prayers that change things. She woke up and she narrated her experience in the after world(mind you not heaven). This was one of the things that made faith a value to me till today. We are a family whose faith has been proven several times through dangerous events.

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  • My mum still miss her mother that died over 50 years ago. It amaze me and I wonder what tie exist between my mother and her mum that makes her emotional about her mother when she talks about her mother 50 years plus after she died.

 

  • My MUM’S best hymn is:

It pays to serve Jesus, I speak from my heart,

He’ll always be with us if we do our part,

There’s naught in this wide world can pleasure afford,

There’s peace and contentment in serving the Lord.

Refrain:

I’ll love him far better than in days of yore

I’ll serve him more truly than ever before

I’ll do as he bids me whatever the cost

I’ll be a true soldier; I’ll die at my post.

 

Mother I love you so much, thank you for was forgiving and giving. Thank you for showing me God. Thank you for teaching values. Thank you for nor always wanting nothing but always giving all of you. You are MY goddess. I love Adenike, the wife of Akinnike, you are my inspiration, you are a queen now the king’s mother. My goddess, happy 65th birthday.

THE COURTS AND INTERNAL DEMOCRACY IN NIGERIA. By Dr Muiz Banire

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In Nigeria, the biggest and most constant headache that confronts the legal adviser of any political party in Nigeria is the non-observance of internal democracy by the party hierarchy. In the Nigerian political landscape, until recently, internal democracy is a mere tag that only existed in the imagination of politicians. In this vein, any electoral position within the structure of a political party is a subject of conferment without any consideration of the electability of the beneficiaries of the conferment. In other words, only those that the political kingmakers consider worthy are conferred with the “honour” of being the party’s candidates; the process of engaging a method that includes the members of the party in the decision making generally and nomination of the flag bearers of the party is considered alien by both the party oligarchy and their suitors. Without mincing words, minority will have both their way and say. The few occasions where the majority get to have their say (when purported primary elections are held), the minority still retain the ultimate power of having their way by superimposing their decisions on the outcome of such internal elections. Internal democracy is slaughtered on the altar of imposition.

By my calling as a legal practitioner, i have the hallowed responsibility of ensuring the observance of rule of law and the tenets of democracy. My duty here extends to political institutions, particularly, with regard to compliance with the applicable laws and the rules of the game. This easily brings to mind the sacred words of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Hon. Justice W. S. N. Onnoghen, GCON at the Call to Bar Ceremonies held on July 13, 2017. His Lordship, in his speech, admonished thus:
“As legal practitioners, you cannot close your eyes to the social, political and economic problems of our time, therefore you have a duty to help rescue our society from pervasive lawlessness, corruption and anti-social activities.”

It is, therefore, not in doubt that it is immoral for a legal practitioner to close his eyes to political parties’ lawlessness. Rescuing internal democracy from the hands of political oppressors and the jaws of imposition falls with the ministerial function of every legal practitioner.

At this juncture, it must be noted that internal democracy transcends the internal affairs of a political party. This is because the Nigerian legal framework duly recognizes it and commands compliance with it. In this regard, section 228(a) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as altered) confers on the National Assembly the power to make laws providing for:
“…guidelines and rules to ensure internal democracy, within political parties, including making laws for the conduct of party primaries, party congresses and party convention….”

It was in the exercise of this power that the National Assembly enacted section 87 of the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended). It clearly set out the guidelines, rules and steps that a political party must follow in the nomination of its candidates for elections. Here, section 87(1) of the Act is instructive, clear and unambiguous. It provides thus:
“A political party seeking to nominate candidates for election under this Act shall hold primaries for aspirants to all elective positions” [Emphasis mine]

Section 87 of the Act is so elaborate that it states the types of primaries that a political party may adopt (direct or indirect) and the procedural steps a political party must follow where it adopts either of the two types of primary election in case of each election mentioned therein. Emphasising the purpose of section 87 of the Act, in PDP v. Sylvia [2012] 13 NWLR (part 1316) 85 at 148, paras. A-B, Chukwuma-Eneh, JSC opined thus:
“The clear object the provisions of section 87 is intended to achieve besides the inculcation of internal democracy in the affairs of political parties in this country moreso in the conduct of their party primaries includes thus making them transparent and providing level playing ground for their contestants in party primaries….”

Equally important is the fact that the constitution of political parties contains the procedure for the nomination of candidates and voting at congresses and party conventions. In this respect, the constitution of the political party sets out how the party’s primary elections are to be conducted in a manner that institutionalises internal democracy. An example that easily comes to mind is Article 20 of the Constitution of the All Progressives Congress (as amended), the political party in which I am the legal adviser. A look at the provisions of the said Article 20 makes it clear that candidates of the party can only emerge through a democratic path. In case of indirect primaries, the delegates that will vote at the primary election must have been democratically elected by members of the party from the various wards contained in particular constituency at congress. Even where an aspirant is unopposed, democratic principles still have to be followed to ensure that the unopposed aspirant is not a product of imposition. Without a doubt, the party constitution has entrenched internal democracy and eschewed imposition of candidates by the “powerful” minority.

Based on the foregoing, it would be reasonable to assume that when it comes to nomination of candidates for elections, the legal adviser of a political party could go to sleep knowing that the legal framework would hold sway. However, it is common knowledge that this is rarely the case. The fact is that any legal adviser that urges compliance with the legal framework and adherence to internal democracy easily finds himself to be a lone voice. He is considered a rebel that is deserving of being ostracized from the decision-making and deliberation within the party structure.

Despite the foregoing, it gladdens my heart to say that the Supreme Court, under the leadership of the current Chief Justice of Nigeria, the Hon. chief Justice Onnoghen, has taken the courageous step of ensuring that the political oligarchy do not succeed in casting internal democracy into the refuse bin. Now, political parties are faced with the fact that the erosion of internal democracy will not go unpunished. A case worthy of consideration is the very recent and yet to be reported decision of the Supreme Court in Mato v. Hembe & 2 Ors. SC.733/2016 (delivered on 23rd day of June, 2017), amongst others.

Before delving into the recent landmark decisions of the Supreme Court on this issue, it is necessary to note that the Supreme Court has always made pronouncements on the importance of internal democracy and the need for political parties to obey its own constitution as well as the jurisdiction of the courts to intervene in this regard. In the case of Shinkafi v. Yari [2016] 1 SC (Part II) 1 at 31, line 13 to line 23, the Supreme Court held thus:
“… it is now trite that where a political party conducts its primary and a dissatisfied contestant at the primary election complains about its conduct of the primaries, the Courts have jurisdiction by virtue of the provision of Section 87(9) of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended) to examine if the conduct of the primary was in accordance with the party’s Constitution and Guidelines. The reason is that in the conduct of its primaries, the Courts will never allow a political party to act arbitrarily or as it likes. A political party must obey its Constitution.”

The Supreme Court made a similar stance in Tarzoor v. Ioraer [2016] 3 NWLR (part 1500) 463 at 529, para. G. In the leading judgment of Rhodes-Vivour, JSC in PDP v. Sylvia (supra) at 125, paras. D-E, the Supreme Court held thus:
“…where the political party conducts its primary and a dissatisfied contestant at the primary complains about the conduct of the primaries the courts have jurisdiction by virtue of the provisions of section 87 (9) of the Electoral Act to examine if the conduct of the primary elections was conducted in accordance with the parties constitution and Guidelines. This is so because in the conduct of its primaries the courts will never allow a political party to act arbitrarily or as it likes. A political party must obey its own constitution.”

Also, pertinent is the hallowed warning of Supreme Court in the case of C.P.C. v. Ombugadu [2013] 18 NWLR (part 1385) 66 at 129 to 130, paras. F-E where Ngwuta, JSC held thus:
“An army is greater than the numerical strength of its soldiers. In the same Vein, a political party is greater than the numerical strength of its membership just like a country, for instance, Nigeria, is greater than the totality of its citizens. It follows that in the case of a political party, such as the 1st appellant herein, the interest of an individual member or a group of members or a group of members within the party, irrespective of the place of such member or a group in the hierarchy of the party, must yield place to the interest of the party. It is the greed, borne of inordinate ambition to own, control and manipulate their own political parties by individuals and groups therein and the expected reaction by other party members that result to the internal wrangling and want of internal democracy that constitute the bane of political parties in Nigeria.
….
…It is apparent that a few powerful elements therein hijack the parties and arrogated to themselves right to sell elective and appointive positions to the party member who can afford same….
There is a popular saying that politics is a dirty game. I do not share this view. It is the players who are dirty and they inflict their filth on their members and, by implication on the society. Politicians must learn to play the game of politics in strict compliance with its rules of organised society.” [Emphasis ours]

It is now trite to give due consideration to the impactful decision of the Supreme Court in Mato v. Hembe (supra). In that case, Onnoghen, CJN held that holding a primary election in a manner contrary to the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended) and the constitution of the political party will render such primary election null and void. At page 37 to 40 of His Lordship’s judgment, His Lordship held thus:

“The facts deposed to in paragraphs 3 and 4 of the affidavit in support of the Originating Summons show that the said primary election was held at HAF HAVEN HOTEL, MAKURDI quite outside the headquarters of the Federal Constituency. So, apart from the irregularities catalogued in exhibits 4 and 2 reproduced above, the holding of the primary was contrary to the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended) and the constitution of the 2nd defendant.
Section 87(4) of the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended) provides:-
‘A Political Party that adopts the system of indirect primaries for the choice of its candidate shall adopt the procedure outlined below-
(c) in the case of nomination to the position of senatorial candidate, House of Representatives and Head of Assembly, a political party shall, where they intend to sponsor candidates-
(i) hold special congress in the Senatorial District, Federal Constituency and State Assembly respectively, with delegates voting for each of the aspirants in designated centres in specified dates’
As a corollary to the above provision, article 14.11 of the 2nd defendant’s Constitution provides that every member shall assemble at their respective Federal Constituency Headquarters and voting shall be by secrete ballot. A combined reading of these two provisions reveals that it is mandatory for the political parties to hold their congresses for the purpose of selecting their candidates in the headquarters of the Constituency. As was pointed out by the learned counsel for appellant in their written address, the Electoral Act and the 2nd respondent’s constitution make detailed provisions for the way and manner by which primary elections are to be conducted. This is to ensure a level playing field for all aspirants. Any contravention of the Act and the Constitution of the Party in this regard would be regarded as a ploy to negate the principle of due process of law enshrined therein.
It is trite that where a statute provides for a means of doing a thing, no other means or manner shall be permitted. Both the Electoral Act and the Constitution of the 2nd defendant make it mandatory that primaries be conducted in the headquarters of the Constituency. The failure to comply with these provisions makes the entire exercise null and void…
The truth must be told and that is, that the 1st and 2nd defendants did not respect the provisions of the Electoral Act and the constitution of the 2nd defendant in the conduct of the primaries. This court has decided in quite a number of cases that political parties must obey their own constitutions as the court will not allow them to act arbitrarily or as they like….
From all I have endeavoured to say above, it is crystal clear that the primaries which produced the 1st defendant was frought (sic) with manifold irregularities aside the fact that he was not even qualified to contest same.” [Emphasis mine]

Beyond doubt, by this singular pronouncement, His Lordship seeks to enthrone internal democracy in the affairs of political parties. In the same vein, Kekere-Ekun, JSC asserted that where political parties appear to violate the principles of internal democracy, the courts will not hesitate to whip them into line by wielding the big stick. In Mato v. Hembe (supra) at page 2-3 of His Lordship’s judgment, Kekere-Ekun, JSC held thus:

“This case, in my view is a clear example of the mischief sought to be tackled by section 87(9) of the Electoral Act, 2010 as amended. While it is true that the courts will not interfere in the internal affairs of a political party nor its choice of candidate, Section 87(9) of the Electoral Act ensures that in making their choice of candidates for elective office political parties do not stray beyond the confines of the Electoral Act or their own electoral guidelines. The section seeks to curb the impunity with which political parties hitherto acted without regard to the democratic norms they profess to practice. As stated by my learned brother in the lead judgment, this court in a plethora of cases has asserted the fact that political parties must obey their own constitutions and guidelines and where necessary (as provided by law) the courts will intervene and wield the big stick to prevent arbitrariness. The only way our democratic dispensation can work effectively is where every aspirant for political office, who is qualified to contest an election, is given an even playing field. The failure of internal democracy within our political parties right from the grassroots level eventually leads to instability in the entire political system. The failure of internal democracy is one of the reason why the courts’ dockets are congested with pre-election disputes. In Ugwu vs. Ararume (2007) 12 NWLR (Pt. 1048) 376 @ 514 D-E, this court per Mahmud Mohammed, JSC (as he then was) admonished:
‘My lords if we want to instill sanity into our human affairs, if we want to entrench unpolluted democracy in our body polity, the naked truth must permeate through the blood, nerve and brain of each and everyone of us. Although credit may not always have its rightful place in politics, we should try to blend the two so as to attain a fair, just and egalitarian society where no one is oppressed. Let us call a spade a spade!’

I am in entire agreement with my learned brother, that in the circumstances of this case it was crystal clear that not only were there irregularities in the primary election that produced the 1st respondent, the 2nd respondent failed to follow its own guidelines in the selection of its candidate. I agree that in the eyes of the law the plaintiff/appellant was the only candidate of the 2nd defendant/2nd respondent as found by the report of the 2nd defendant’s Appeals Committee.”

At page 4 of Eko, JSC’s judgment in Mato v. Hembe, His Lordship did not mince words in calling the 1st Respondent an impostor.

Another very recent decision of the Supreme Court is between Alhaji Shuaibu Isa Lau v. Sen. Sani Abubakar Danladi regarding the Taraba North Senatorial District (delivered on June 23, 2017). The Punch Newspaper, under the caption: Harsh verdicts await unqualified candidates, S’Court tells political parties, quoted, Augie JSC thus:

“This is a hard and very bitter lesson for political parties to learn. They may have chosen candidates or eminent personalities they want to present as candidates to INEC, but they have to play by the rules.
“The chosen candidates must comply with requirements of the law; they must abide by the provisions of the Electoral Act, which creates a level playing field for all aspirants who seek to contest elections.
“So, the political parties and their candidates must obey the rules.”

I need not say more. Ordinarily, this ought to sound a death knell on the untoward practice of imposition of candidates contrary to the provisions of the applicable laws and the party’s constitution. However, it appears that party oligarchy appear to enjoy turning a deaf ear.

In the recent decision of the High Court of Lagos State (per Okuwobi, J.) in Suit No. ID/1838/GCM/2017: Hakkem Abolaji Saka v. All Progressives Congress & Anor. (delivered on July 7, 2017), the court did not hesitate to nullify the nomination of candidate without the conduct of primary election in accordance with the stipulation of the Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission Law and the Constitution of All Progressives Congress. Consequently, the Court, inter alia, made and order restraining the Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission from recognising, relying on or using any list of chairmanship candidates submitted by All Progressives Congress for the forthcoming Local Government elections in Odi-Olowo Local Council Development Area.

Without a doubt, the foregoing is commendable as it shows that parties do not have to get to the Supreme Court before the judiciary wields the figurative big stick where a political party jettisons internal democracy in the conduct of its affairs. This is, particularly, instructive because the elements behind imposition always rely on the fact that it would take years before the matter would be decided by the Supreme Court in the course of which their imposed candidate would have enjoyed a substantial portion of the tenure of office. The good news however now is that, not only are pre-election cases on fast track now, impostors are now sanctioned by both removal and restitution of illegally gotten dues. With the proactive pronouncement of High Court of Lagos State, the erosion of internal democracy will be nipped in the bud and good things will not suffer irreparable injury before salvation comes.

Good governance is the desire of every sane society. In order for any society to have good governance, there must be good leadership. For there to be good leadership in a democratic setting, internal democracy must be effectively and effectually practised. One can only hope that political parties see the writing on the wall and behave accordingly.
In conclusion, I believe the role of Courts in contemporary times in the strengthening of internal democracy is not only commendable but proactive. It is only hoped that more of our courts will see the wisdom in this approach and political parties learn the art of respect for the rule of law.

WHY ARE WE IN DARKNESS?

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What is the essence of power? What has power got to do with sustainable businesses? Why should the power sector be fixed? If the power sector is paralyzed, what is the effect? Why are we in darkness? These are rhetorical questions have been asking and continue to ask myself.

In Nigeria over 75 million people are yet to be connected to National grid, with Nigeria’s power capacity between 4,500MW and 7200MW but can only supply between 2,500MW and 4,000MW per time it is glaring that Nigeria has shortage of power. Recent statistics show that Nigerians spend over #700 Billion (Seven hundred Billion Naira) on fueling generators without maintenance and utility. This is sure big loss and wastage in the economy; it is expedient and purely sensible for government to quickly fix the power sector to boost the economy and foster prosperity.

It is clear that with well over 75 million people yet to be connected to the national grid and many still do not have up to 20 hours of power every week, it is clear that Nigeria needs to expand her power capacity with investment in clean and sustainable energy to cushion climate change.

Nigeria’s main sources of power are mainly Hydro and Natural gas. During dry season there is always a drop in power because of reduction in water pressure from the hydro power station. Hydro power has its limitations if we cannot control the water pressure to be constant all year round. Hydro power is really safe but sustainability is yet to be achieved in Nigeria. When the dry season is heavy, sometimes Nigeria power capacity drops to 1,900MW. As one of the fastest growing economy in Africa, we could double our growth if we invest effectively in power.

The unpatriotic and destructive attitude of greedy citizens and militants across the water coast where there are gas pipeline is sabotage on access to power. Nigeria is a gas and crude oil producing nation, gas is a very good alternative to providing power, many houses now use gas cooker to make their food, iron their clothes and recently new innovations like gas generator are becoming more acceptable in Nigerian household. The continuous vandalism of gas pipeline by militants has been a great jab on every little progress the power sector tries to make in providing clean and sustainable power. Vanguard newspaper reported that in 2015 NNPC said Nigeria lost #51.3 billion to vandals.

In the global community, connection is important, without power on our phones, laptops and gadgets, this connection will never be possible. Power is important to our business life. It is the soul of productivity in government, entertainment and agriculture.

In Mowe, ogun state a small community of about 5000 houses, Mowe is on the Lagos-Ibadan expressway, the main expressway that connect the north, east and south of Nigeria together. Mowe is a strategic location because it is a small town between Lagos (the commercial hub of Nigeria) and Ogun(the border state to Benin Republic) Many religious organization have their headquarters on this expressway, yet it is really sad to know that nobody in mowe has up to 20 hours power. The community has been forgotten by the government, no good road, no water, non-functional health centre and the worse is that the town is in darkness.

In Mowe, many are connected to the national grid but have less than 20 hours power and they pay between #2000 and #5000 monthly without constant power supply. Many houses have a running generator, rechargeable lamp, kerosene lamp to lighting their homes at night.

Many have been in and out of hospital because of adulterated kerosene by criminals. A resident of Mowe that want to remain anonymous said, “The inability of government to provide electricity made me almost lost my eye while refueling the kerosene lamp for my son who was preparing for exams”.

The owner of Adonai ventures also recount her loss to fueling her generator everyday with petrol. She said, “It is really annoying to spend #30,000 monthly on generator, do we have a government at all?” She asked rhetorically.

Doctor Oyin says, “Hospital bills can be reduced by 20% if there is constant, stable, and affordable power supply. We run generator 24 hours in our hospital because we deal with lives, we cannot afford to take chances on our patients. We know there are a lot of people who need to access cheap health care but the cost of running the hospital especially power is a big challenge to accessing low cost health care. It is a pity that the government health Centre that are supposed to cushion this effect are not also working. Who suffers? The lowest cadre of the society that the government was elected to serve”.

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From 2005-2008 when I was in high school I read with a kerosene lamp or rechargeable lamp which has affected my eye sight. I have seen the doctor and a correcting eye glass was recommended but I have refused to use it. The doctor said, “You have over stressed and strained your eye to read in the time past, you eat good food that is why your eye sight is still sharp, but to stop the tears and itching in your eyes you need a correcting glasses”. Lack of power has different adverse effect on our health, business, education and others. I did lost some reading days in school because of no power supply which had its own negative effect sometimes on my education.

Rape, robbery, and kidnapping on the Lagos-Ibadan expressway at night is becoming worrisome, yet the reason crime flourish is there is no street light, responsive and reliable security operative on the road at night.

What exactly should we be doing? Is there a solution? Sure there is. I am no expert at power but I will try my best as an active participant. Corruption is a huge monster on the way to sufficient power supply; a whooping #30 billion was spent between 1999 and 2007 to revamp the power sector without result. No one has been punished or sentenced by EFCC or ICPC for public fund misuse. This is still a tragedy.

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Privatization of the power sector is a great move in the right direction. Reduction in bureaucracy and bottleneck in getting license for a power company like ENEL will be a major move to lighting every house in Nigeria. A close monitoring of all gas pipe using technology will further make power capacity in Nigeria stable. Nigeria government must be willing to finally bring corruption to a hurt in the public sector for citizens to access power.

Exploring clean and safe energy like solar, wind, and so on will further help expand the national grid. Currently, the federal government is the only one that has the legal power to generate power, this is a big challenge, and therefore government must allow private company, state, local government and investors to generate power in states, communities and regions.

Government must create the free and fair environment for investors to profit while also protecting the citizens from greedy investors. Government must be a fair umpire between power companies and customers through legal frameworks, policy, and sanctions.

Citizens must begin to protect power infrastructure if they want constant power supply. We all have a responsibility to light up Africa. Africa is rich but we need visionary leaders to lift Africa out of the mess we find ourselves.

Why are we in darkness?