Connect with us

Headline

Opening Remarks by Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, GCFR, on the occasion of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Stakeholders’ Meeting holding at Shehu Yar’Adua Centre, Abuja, on Thursday 6th April, 2017

Published

on

Protocol
My dear party members, on behalf of the leaders of our great party, I welcome you all to this meeting of stakeholders. Thank you for finding time to attend, even at such a short notice.

  1. I specially welcome our State Governors and deputy Governors, our members of the National Assembly who are competently flying our party flag, as well as Senator Ali Modu Sheriff and Senator Ahmed Makarfi who are our eminent party leaders.

  2. Let me appreciate the presence of the former National chairmen of our great Party and remind ourselves of the commendable services these Chairmen and Acting Chairmen had rendered towards improving the fortunes of our party.

  3. We remember the services of Chief Solomon Lar of blessed memory, Dr. Ahmadu Ali, Chief Vincent Ogbulafor, Chief Okwesilieze Nwodo, Dr Haliru Bello, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, Alhaji Adamu Muazu and Prince Uche Secondus.

  4. Permit me to also acknowledge the efforts of our founding fathers who played key roles in moving the country from dictatorship to a constitutional democracy. We remember the services of the former Vice President Chief Alex Ekwueme, Mallam Adamu Chiroma and others. We are proud to state that the PDP had propelled this country into a functional democracy and creditably managed the affairs of the nation for 16 years, from 1999 to 2015.

  5. I will like to note at this point that, although I had been working with some of our leaders back stage, this is the very first major meeting of our Great party that I will be attending, since I left office almost two years ago. So permit me to describe this meeting as a joyous family
    re-union. I am really very pleased with the enthusiasm shown by our party members to attend this meeting.

  6. There is no doubt that our party has in the last two years gone through some difficulties. However, in a democracy this is not strange in the life of a political party, especially after losing power to the opposition, like we did.

  7. I should note that the situation is similar, albeit milder, even in advanced democracies. We should not forget that the Labour Party in the United Kingdom and the Democratic Party in the United States, both of which lost power at different times, have also been making efforts to reunite, reconcile and re-energise to become stronger, before the next general elections.

  8. I will like to point out that every election cycle throws up a challenge as well as opportunities for a political party; a test to re-evaluate its performance, and an opportunity to reform its processes and programmes, towards rediscovering itself to become even more appealing to the electorates, in its next outing.

  9. That is how evolution happens in a functional democracy: as parties continue to retool and reform in the bid to regain political power, governance improves and the people and society become better.

  10. It is obvious that some of our people see this development as not only disappointing but discouraging for our great party. Although I can understand this sense of loss, I always prefer to align myself with those who choose to see it differently, given the positive impact our conduct and disposition has had in deepening our democracy.

  11. All over the world, political parties lose elections, not because they have entirely failed, but because, in most cases, the people who gave them power in the first place, have decided to hand it over to another party, in order to experience a different kind of leadership. In Africa and other emerging democracies, the challenge had always been with the disposition of the party in power to allow the people the opportunity to freely exercise this right.

  12. This obviously is the area where we have excelled. The fact that we allowed this process to take place peacefully, and freely handed over power to the opposition did not only lift the profile of our party, but also elevated our country to the status of one of the world’s stable and reliable democracies. For this gesture alone, the whole world has continued to applaud our party and its leaders as icons of democracy on the continent.

  13. We were able to achieve this because our Government really reformed the electoral and political process, by giving the electoral bodies their true independence which subsequently opened up the political space for free and fair elections.

  14. We may have had shortcomings while in power, but we also recorded significant achievements and great milestones. Through purposeful leadership, we reformed our institutions, rebuilt the nation’s confidence, regained international goodwill and rekindled hope in our people.

  15. This is not a forum for chest-thumping but it is important we highlight some relevant initiatives of past PDP administrations. Our ideological commitment towards a private sector-led and
    people-oriented economy manifested in the great achievements we recorded in various sectors including communications, agriculture, public financial management and financial reforms, the financial services, rail and roads infrastructure, as well as in the social services.

  16. In agriculture we revolutionized the sector by introducing programmes that encouraged more people, including the youths to embrace farming as a thriving business. We also boosted local capacity for food production, thereby drastically reducing the prize of food stuff and food import bill.

  17. Our Youth Enterprises with Innovation (YouWin) and the Nagropreneur programmes not only encouraged young people to go into such difficult business areas as agriculture, it also helped them to become entrepreneurs and acquire the capacity to employ other people.

  18. That the PDP Government improved communication in Nigeria through the introduction of Global Systems for Mobile Communications (GSM) and the expansion of the nation’s information and communication technology architecture needs no gainsay.

  19. We equally expanded our educational horizon by implementing reforms in the sector and establishing 14 new Federal Government-owned Universities while three colleges of education were upgraded to degree awarding institutions.

  20. We transformed the entertainment industry, especially Nollywood, by not only boosting its capacities and international prominence, but also turning it into an attractive and viable sector that became an important contributor to the growth of our economy.

  21. We built the Kaduna-Abuja rail, the first modern rail in the country. We also pursued a successful automotive policy and established a promising industrial revolution plan.

  22. We equally enacted the Freedom of Information Act (FOI) in order to give the people unfettered access to information on the activities of Government.

  23. The last four years of our time in office as a party was in deed quite momentous as we fully restored confidence in our economy by not only steadying the fundamentals for growth and growing the economy to become the largest in Africa, but also repositioning it to become the number one foreign direct investment destination in Africa.

  24. There is no doubt that the PDP is a leading light in constitutional democracy and this is why we cannot allow the party to continue to drift. This meeting of today is therefore designed to stem the drift.

  25. I have to state clearly that today is not a day to blame ourselves. We have blamed ourselves enough in the media. Today is not a day to insult ourselves, we have also done enough of that in the media. Today is the day our great party men and women will come up with suggestions and solutions to our problems. We will surely overcome the current challenge. The PDP will definitely rise again.

  26. The meeting of today is noticeably unique and it is aimed at achieving two key objectives:
    To reassure our party members and all Nigerians that the PDP is united and still remains the largest party in Nigeria and one that has all it takes to win key elections.
    That without prejudice to the on going litigation over some issues, the party leaders are out to develop a mechanism towards achieving a lasting and enduring political settlement of our differences.

  27. Great and committed members of our Great Party, you will all agree with me that this house as presently constituted is too large to fine tune details of our reconciliation plans and for the intended final political settlement out of court. Permit me to therefore recommend that the meeting be conducted in two tiers viz:

The larger body of stakeholders as we are now. This body will come up with suggestions on the way forward for resolving the differences that we currently face.

A smaller committee of not more than 40 members will be constituted to fine tune the suggestions of the larger body, to finally resolve all the outstanding issues.

  1. In closing, I charge our great party leaders to make personal and general sacrifices to ensure the quick resolution of the problems in our party. The PDP is a symbol of democracy. If you believe in the PDP, there is no sacrifice too big for you to make.

  2. As politicians, with the zeal to lead our people, we must aspire to higher offices or identify the people we believe have leadership qualities and encourage them to aspire to those positions. But one thing is very clear: You cannot, as the polity is configured today, be elected into a higher office on the platform of a weak party.

  3. We must all, therefore, work to rebuild the PDP and strengthen the party in line with the vision of our founding fathers, and the mission to continue to provide for the good of the people of our great country, valuable leadership in a stable democracy rooted in the rule of law.

  4. We have to remind ourselves that the prolongation of the crisis in our party may have cost us so much in election fortunes, in recent time. The loss of Edo and Ondo gubernatorial elections is still fresh in our memory. It goes without saying that we cannot afford to have a repeat of that in the forthcoming elections in Anambra, Ekiti and Osun States.

  5. It is high time we buried the hatchet, suppressed our ego and prepared to make sacrifices in the interest of our party and, in deed the country.

  6. Our ambitions therefore must come second, otherwise we will only be building castles on quick sand. We must realize that as they say, everybody is nobody without a platform. So, why destroy the platform?

  7. I urge our teeming members to remain steadfast and continue to believe in the PDP. As I said earlier, it is true that we suffered a setback in 2015, but the fact remains that the PDP is still the largest party in our dear country.

  8. There is no doubt that the PDP will emerge from this moment of trial to regain its position as the greatest party on our continent.

My great party men and women, thank you for coming.

God bless the People’s Democratic Party!

God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria!!

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Headline

LASG URGES LEKKI PROPERTY OWNERS TO COMPLY WITH MASTER PLAN OR FACE STATUTORY ENFORCEMENT

Published

on

The Lagos State Government has urged property owners and developers in Lekki, Ajah and Eti-Osa environs to comply with the Masterplan of the area or face statutory enforcement.

The Honourable Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Dr. Idris Salako disclosed this on Thursday at Lekki, during a stakeholders’ meeting with property owners and developers in the axis to discuss seamless processing of Planning Permits, adding that owners and developers of property in the area must ensure voluntary compliance with the Master Plan for the area.

He explained that it is through compliance that the sanctity of the Revised Ikoyi/Victoria Island Model City Plan and Lekki Comprehensive Master Plan could be guaranteed, being the Operative Development Plan covering the area.

“You are to please note that the Approval Order of the Plans, as applicable, remain the only valid references for any developmental activity that can be carried out in this area until another review is conducted”, he said.

He warned that the deliberate contravention of the Approval Order, Extant Law and Regulations must stop as the Ministry would not allow the ugly trend of haphazard and illegal development to continue unabated.

While calling for the cessation of illegal dealings concerning the authorisation and documentation of buildings, the related sanction of which include demolition and prosecution, the Commissioner reiterated that the observed underhand deals in respect of building construction include non-adherence to Planning Permit; deliberate falsehood in the design drawings and construction of buildings after submission, prior to the grant of Planning Permit and the mandatory Stage Certification.

“Others are falsification of documents such as Mandatory Statutory Clearances, payment receipts and LIRS Tax Clearance as well as Fake Approvals in connivance with third parties, some of whom are staff of the Ministry who are illegally engaged to provide ‘Administrative Protection’ instead of dealing with us directly through our formal channels”, he said.

He emphasised that the mentioned sharp practices among others were criminal offences liable for prosecution, saying that “This meeting is another golden opportunity for you to right the wrongs that had been done in order to avoid any public embarrassment which the statutory enforcements may cause to you and your distinguished personalities”.

“In this regard, you are enjoined to always endeavour to comply with all statutory requirements for the construction of your building, including obtaining Planning Permit from the Lagos State Physical Planning Permit Authority (LASPPPA) and Stage Certification from the Lagos State Building Control Agency (LASBCA)”, he said.

He advised property owners and developers to apply for Planning Permit from the LASPPPA District Office within the jurisdiction of their proposed development and explore the website https://epp.lagosstate.gov.ng for all necessary information and guidance in this regard.

He said that the Ministry would endeavour to continue its stride to accelerate and intensify continuous public enlightenment and advocacy for the achievement of the T.H.E.M.E.S. Agenda.

Speaking in the same vein, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Urban Development, Mr. Ganiyu Adele Ayuba added that the role of the Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development was to ensure adherence to planning and bring about orderliness and sustainability in the built environment and urged the stakeholders to always do the needful by embracing the due process.

The Chairman, Lagos Inland Revenue Service (LIRS), Mr. Hamzat Subair reiterated that it was part of LIRS’ mandate to make income tax assessment on applications for Planning Permit, adding that the essence of taxation was to finance development.

The General Manager, LASPPPA, Tpl. Funmi Oshifuye; General Manager LASBCA, Engr. Biola Kosegbe and General Manager, Lagos State Urban Renewal Authority (LASURA), Tpl. Ajibike Shomade took turns to make presentations on the processes involved at their respective agencies.

MS/TMS/OS
CONFIDENTIALITY NOTICE: This message, including any attachments, is the property of Lagos State Government and is solely for the use of the individual or entity intended to receive it. It may contain privileged, confidential, and proprietary information and any unauthorized review, use, disclosure, or distribution is prohibited. If you are not the intended recipient(s) or if you have received this message in error, please permanently delete it and contact the sender by reply e-mail. Any personal views or opinions expressed by the writer may not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of any Ministries, Departments, Agencies or Parastatals in the Lagos State.

Continue Reading

Headline

NDDC N40b Probe: No Kobo Is Missing, Misapplied by the IMC…..Ojougboh

Published

on

THE Acting Executive Director, Projects, Interim Management Committee, IMC of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, Dr. Cairo Ojougboh has said that no single Kobo has been misapplied by the Committee since it came on board.

Speaking in Abuja Thursday when he appeared before the Senator Olubunmi Adetunmbi ( APC, Ekiti North) led Ad-hoc Committee probing  into alleged financial recklessness to the tune of N40 billion by the IMC, Ojougboh said that since the interim management came on board, it has not awarded any contract, except the recent one of the Coronavirus, COVID-19  Pandemic where Palliatives were given to people.

Ojougboh  who is presently addressing the Committee has accused both the Chairman, Senate Committee on Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Peter Nwaoboshi and his House of Representatives counterpart as the problem of the interventionist agency.

According to him, if they remain as chairmen of the Committees, Niger Delta region will never develop.

Meanwhile, the Accountant General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris has told the Ad- hoc Committee that a total of N281 billion has so far been released to the NDDC from 2016 to May this year.

Giving a breakdown, he said that in 2016, N41billion was released; in 2017, N64 billion was released; in 2018, a total of N71 billion was released; in 2019, N71 billion was released and from January to May this year, N34 billion was released.

Recall that the Senate is probing alleged financial recklessness to the tune of N40 billion by the Interim Management Committee, IMC, of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC.

Against this backdrop, the Senate had set up six-man Ad-hoc Committee to carry out a holistic investigation into all issues relating to but not limited to the alleged misapplication and misappropriation of the sum of N40billion by the commission.

The Committee, which had four weeks to report back at plenary, was asked to look into all procurement and financial transactions of the commission in this fiscal year (2020) and any other matter that is not in accordance with the provision of the NDDC Establishment Act, 2000 or any other extant law.

In a related development, the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio has assured the National Assembly of his utmost cooperation in the ongoing probe of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).

Recall once again that the Senate is probing alleged financial recklessness to the tune of N40 billion by the Interim Management Committee, IMC, of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC.

Against this backdrop, the Senate had set up a six-man Ad-hoc Committee to carry out a holistic investigation into all issues relating to but not limited to the alleged misapplication and misappropriation of the sum of N40billion by the commission.

Appearing before the Senate ad-hoc Committee on Thursday,  the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs, Mr. Olusade Adesola who stood in for the Minister  regretted the absence of the Minister due to circumstances beyond his control.

Mr Adesola assured the Committee that the Minister held the Panel in high repute and would appear on any other date that the Committee would extend an invitation to him.

Continue Reading

Headline

GROUP CAMPAIGNS AGAINST “RAPE CULTURE” IN OGUN

Published

on

Disturbed by the alarming rate of rape and other sexual and gender-based crimes in the country, a foundation and Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), Oyenola Oluwole Foundation (OOF), in partnership with some stakeholders, has intensified its efforts through outdoor exercise and awareness campaign against rape and other gender crimes.

The outdoor exercise tagged “Walk Against Rape and Female Genital Mutilation”, also known as Female Circumcision, was aimed at campaigning against rape, which has tripled in number since Covid-19 lockdown, held at Abeokuta, the State capital.

Convener of the exercise and founder of the organization, Asiwaju Oyenola Oluwole (Wole Papa) appealed to the Nigerian government to exercise its political will and legislative powers to eradicate rape and other gender crimes, especially Female Genital Mutilation which has become embarassing cultural practice in the country.


L-R:- Asiwaju Oyenola Oluwole (Wole Papa), Convener and Founder of the Oyenola Oluwole Foundation (OOF), Mrs. Gentle Adesanya, Mr. Tunde Adenekan (Skin Dudu), members of the foundation and Mr. Bebe Musiliu Sanni, during a walk and outdoor exercise campaign against Rape and Female Genital Mutilation, organized by the Oyenola Oluwole Foundation, held at Abeokuta, Ogun State capital.

While narrating his personal ordeals with his family, he said “apart from the denigration of human dignity and existence, the stigma that follows this despicable act is always a lasting scar, difficult to erase or wipe away, because of the continual psychological trauma.”

Oluwole said that according to the Nigeria Police, between January and May this year, there were 717 reported cases of rape, as UNICEF statistics confirmed that one in four girls experienced sexual violence before the age of 18, adding that sometimes this despicable acts involved murder of the victims in the process.

He said that they were unable to do much at this time than to campaign against rape and other sexual crimes, through means that they would be safe and also accessible to everyone to hear their voices at this time, noting that they decided to hike with few people under strict observation of the social distancing rules for outdoor events.

“Indeed, rape is a crime, it is traumatizing and we called on the Federal Government for stricter measures against rapists in Nigeria,” Oluwole said

He said that women were more vulnerable to sexual crimes than men, noting that sexual violence reflects and reinforces existing gender inequalities.

It would be recalled that Oyenola Oluwole Foundation was established with the objective of campaigning against Female Genital Mutilation, Rape, Domestic Violence and every form of Social Vices that devalues human dignity.

Continue Reading





FOLLOW US ON TWITTER

Trending