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Vote buying, selling is corruption, ICPC warns

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Acting chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission, ICPC, Dr. Musa Usman Abubakar, has declared that vote buying and selling is corruption and warned various political parties, their candidates, agents and other Nigerians against it before and during the 2019 general elections.

Abubakar spoke over the weekend during the national campaign against vote buying and other electoral malpractices organized by the ICPC in conjunction with the Youth Alive Foundation, YAF and facilitated by the Ummah Support Initiative, a member of the commission’s National Anticorruption Coalition, NACC, in Abuja.

He said: “Vote buying and selling is corruption. It can take various forms, such as collecting payment from candidates before or after voting for them. Such payments are usually made through agents either direct or through phone transfer.

“This is outright bribery and it is punishable under the ICPC Act, 2000. Other forms of electoral malpractices punishable under the ICPC law include rigging in whatever form. Rigging could take the form of falsifying election results by changing figures to favour particular candidates. This is falsification of official records and punishable under the ICPC, Act, 2000”.

Abubakar informed that Section 6(a) of the Act empowers ICPC to prosecute corruption offenders using “both the ICPC Act and any other law that fights against bribery and gratification apart from ICPC Act itself”, adding that the Electoral Act, 2011 as amended is one of such laws emphasized in Section 26 (2) of the ICPC Act.

The ICPC boss, who listed some of the commission’s contributions to the fight against buying and other electoral malpractices in the country, commended the YAF for its achievements in the fight against corruption, especially its recent Integrity Award which named and famed credible Nigerians of integrity.

“If honesty is appreciated, many Nigerians would like to be honest and the fight against corruption will be more successful and a lot easier”, he said.
Also, a public affairs analyst, Imam Ishaq Abdullahi, described the growing culture of vote buying and selling as worrisome, stressing that use of cash to induce voters is a violation of the Electoral Act.

Abdullahi, who particularly warned the youth against the act, noted that if care was not taken electorate would end up voting for people who do not have policies and those that are only interested in syphoning public funds.

He said: “If you sell your votes with just N5, 000, you won’t have the audacity to criticize the government of poor performance or lack of delivering dividends of democracy. I therefore urge you not to mortgage your future with vote buying and selling”.

“Try and vote for candidates of your choice without allowing any political party or politicians dictating to you on who to vote for. When you do so, it always backfires with dire consequence. Your vote is your power and once you sell your vote, you have sold your power and conscience”.

Other speakers at the event advised Nigerians against vote buying and selling, saying if not stopped could hamper the growth of democracy in the country.

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Metro

FG urged to declare state of emergency on federal roads, Senate tasks

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Disturbed by the deplorable conditions of road networks across the country, the Senate on Tuesday, charged the federal government to declare a state of emergency on all federal roads.
This was as the upper legislative chamber mandated  its Committees on Petroleum (Downstream), Federal Roads Maintenance Agency, FERMA and National Planning to investigate the Petroleum Products Price Regulatory Agency, PPPRA on the non-remittance of five percent user charge pump price of petrol.
Besides, the joint committees were also asked to investigate the non remittance of international vehicle transit charge accruing to FERMA and other established state roads maintenance agency.
These resolutions followed deliberations on a motion sponsored under Orders 42 and 52 of the Senate rule by Senator Geshom Bassey (PDP Cross River South)  who lamented the deplorable state of federal roads in the country.
Presenting the motion, Senator Basset expressed concern that several thousands of lives have been lost to road accidents due to bad and un-motorable roads, while bad portion of roads are safe haven for kidnappers and armed robbers on Nigerian highways.
Supporting the motion, Senator Chukwuka Utazi (PDP Enugu North) said the state of the federal highways are highly deplorable and that urgent attention is needed especially within this budget cycle to do something drastic to address the situation.
Utazi said “and like you prayed that the PPPRA should release the fund for totally provided for FERMA to do  it’s job.
“Mr President, the raining season is just gradually coming to an end and this is the opportunity for FERMA to go and start rehabilitating our roads so that Nigerians can move freely.
“This period is also the time for harvest and in order to ensure that farmers that are in the hinterland get to the appropriate market to get adequate prices for their goods, we  have to make sure the roads are properly done.
“You also know that because we don’t have the rail lines that should be in place, most of the goods and services that we move from one place to the other are done through trucking and if you continue to do trucking, you know that the life span of any  major federal highway may not last long.
“This is a very important motion moved at the most appropriate time to get the desired attention and I’m standing here lending my support and full weigh to get that being done knowing fully well that those of us from the south east are the major complainants of the bad roads in this country and we hope that we get the desired attention from FERMA if  this motion scales through.”
In his remark, President of the Senate, Dr. Ahmad Lawan said he believe that every part of the country suffers from this problem of deplorable  roads.
He expressed optimism that the  committees mandated to look into the matter will  swing into action and attend to the issue associated with this motion.
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Metro

SAD… Taraba INEC REC is dead

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The INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner, (REC) in Taraba State, Alhaji Baba Abba Yusuf, is dead.
INEC Secretary, Rose Oriarian-Anthony, said the REC died on Saturday night at the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital, Borno State, where he had been on admission.
She said: “The Independent National Electoral Commission regrets to announce the death of the Resident Electoral Commissioner for Taraba State, Alhaji Baba Abba Yusuf.
“He died last (Saturday) night at the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital, Borno State, where he was on admission for sometime.
He was buried today (Sunday) September 29 2019 at 4pm in Maiduguri.
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Transgender: Sade Adu’s daughter finally becomes a man (PHOTOS)

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Izaak and Mum

Sade’s transgender son has shared a heartfelt message of thanks to the soul singer, as he completes his transition from female to male.

Izaak Theo Adu, born Mickailia ‘Ila’ Adu, has spent the past six months in recovery after undergoing phalloplasty surgery, the reconstructive procedure typically undergone by transgender and non-binary people.

After returning home to his family, Izaak shared a sweet photo of himself hugging Sade, 60, along with a message praising the iconic singer for her unwavering support. In the Instagram post, Izaak wrote: ‘It’s been a long hard road but We did it!! We are coming home!!!! ‘Thank you for staying by my side these past 6 months Mumma. Thank you for fighting with me to complete the man I am. ‘Thank you for your encouragement when things are hard, for the love you give me. The purest heart. I love you so much. Queen of queens ♥️ #mumma #lioness #queen#iloveyou.’

Izaak is Sade’s only child from her former relationship with reggae music producer Bob Morgan.

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