Archive for February, 2015

Rivers APC Alleges Its 30 Supporters Killed, says ‘We are now endangered species’

Posted on February 26, 2015. Filed under: Press Release |

Rivers APC Alleges Its 30 Supporters Killed, says ‘We are now endangered species’   

*Demands for the immediate rescue of kidnapped Ndigbara

By Nwaorgu Faustinus

DR IKANYA IBIAMU DAVIES THE APC RS INTERIM CHAIRMANThe Rivers State Chapter of All Progressives Congress (APC) has alleged that over 30 of its supporters have been killed in the political violence that has rocked the State in the past few months. The party stated this in a press statement today, Thursday 26 February 2015.

“Our investigations showed that we have lost no fewer than 30 of our members and supporters in political attacks instigated in parts of the State by agents of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). As painful as this is, we are miffed that no single arrest has been made by the police in connection with these politically-motivated killings calculated to intimidate and annihilate us a political party,” Rivers APC Chairman, Chief Davis Ibiamu Ikanya, said.

Ikanya in a statement issued in Port Harcourt lamented that those behind the killings are becoming increasingly emboldened by the day as demonstrated by their brazen attack on APC’s gubernatorial campaign train in Okrika on 18th February 2015.

“With the shooting, bombing and successful disruption of our Okrika rally which was aimed principally at eliminating our gubernatorial candidate, Dr. Dakuku Adol Peterside, with the successful kidnapping of Fred Ndigbara, a civil servant working in the Media Unit of Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, the Governor of Rivers State, we indeed need no soothsayer to tell us that we are no longer protected but now endangered species. When a political party is denied the right to canvas for votes in an assumed democratic system, as has been done to us in Okrika, we can only conclude that Nigeria is slowly but steadily slipping into a state of anarchy. With the lives of our people threatened on daily basis, with the security agencies looking the other way, we have every reason to wonder if the PDP-controlled Federal Government is truly serious that elections will hold in Rivers State during the general elections scheduled for March and April,” Ikanya said.

The Rivers APC Chairman commended Inspector General of Police, Suleiman Abba, “for ordering full investigation into the madness that happened at Okrika, where one of the policemen providing security at our rally was brutally killed”.

He also commended Zone 6 Assistant Inspector General of Police, Tunde Ogunsakin, for ordering Rivers State Commissioner of Police, CP Dan Bature, to rescue Mr. Fred Ndigbara from the hands of those that kidnapped him while on a democratic duty during the rally of APC at Khana recently. “We however wish to emphasise that something serious must be done soon to avoid us losing hope on the ability of the police to secure our lives,” Ikanya said.

He added: “PDP and its promoters can’t be allowed to continue to act with impunity as if the police are an extension of the party as being boasted by some of its chieftains. It is very unfortunate and sad that a Police Force that is being sustained and maintained by our taxes should allow its reputation to be ruined by a group of people who do not mean well for our State.

“We hereby demand the immediate rescue of Mr. Fred Ndigbara, a harmless fellow whose only crime is belonging to APC, and that adequate protection be accorded to our gubernatorial candidate and the entire APC leadership in Rivers State. We also demand a stop to the further harassment of our members. We are full citizens of this country and we can no longer tolerate being treated like second class citizens.”

Rivers APC commiserated with the family of the slain policeman, police corporal Ifeanyi Okorie and assured that it will do everything humanly possible to ensure that his children are given the best education that they need to succeed in life. The party thanked the leadership of the Federal House of Representatives for showing solidarity with Dr. Peterside and the leadership of APC over the unwarranted Okrika attack and for demanding that the security agencies should get to the root of the matter.

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Olejeme mourns Bayelsa women, says there is no alternative to Jonathan

Posted on February 25, 2015. Filed under: news |

Olejeme mourns Bayelsa women, says there is no alternative to Jonathan

Dr Ngozi Olejeme

Dr Ngozi Olejeme

President Goodluck Jonathan has been described as the best presidential pilot to take the country safely to the next level of development.

“Dr. Goodluck Jonathan is a man of character and competence” Deputy Chairman, Finance Committee of the PDP Presidential Campaign Organization, Dr. Ngozi Olejeme said.

Speaking on Tuesday in Abuja with journalists, Olejeme advised Nigerians to be more concerned with the vision, integrity, acumen and ability of the presidential candidate.

In her words “there is no alternative to Jonathan in the March 28 Presidential Polls”.

Olejeme who is also Chairman of Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSITF) insisted that the socio-economic reforms of the current administration have made impact in the different spheres of the nation’s life.

“President Goodluck Jonathan has provided leadership by re-engineering the polity, transforming the socio-economic landscape of Nigeria and broadening the prosperity of the country and the people by providing jobs, upgrading the nation’s infrastructure, promoting multiple export industries, reaching the poor and rural areas, creating larger space for small and medium- sized business and bringing hope to the people”.

Echoing the president’s leadership qualities, Olejeme said “Dr. Goodluck Jonathan is a shining example of honesty, humility and quality leadership”.

“President Jonathan has proved to Nigerians that government is all about accountability. He will continue to educate our children, focus on health care and uphold rule of law at all times”.

Olejeme urged Nigerians to reject those who view public life as a means to increase private wealth.

She explained that the issue of winning the March 28 election is already a foregone conclusion.

“The task of ensuring victory at the polls for the People’s Democratic Party has been performed by the president through good policies, job creation and projects that have direct impact on the people”.

“Jonathan’s victory in the March 28 presidential election will wipe out the cry of marginalization from Nigeria, improve the current reforms and consolidate the gains for the greater good of all Nigerians whether from the North or South” she said.

Olejeme also sympathized with the government and people of Bayelsa State over the death of some prominent women from the state in a motor accident.

Her eyes filled with tears, Olejeme said “it is really hard to believe. It is just so sad”

By Ebireri Henry Ovie

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Electoral Violence: Rivers APC Committee Indicts PDP

Posted on February 25, 2015. Filed under: Press Release |

Dakuku 3

  • Says Okrika attack aimed to eliminate Dakuku Peterside

The committee set up by the Rivers State Chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to investigate increasing cases of electoral violence in the State has indicted the rival Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Submitting the committee’s report to Rivers State APC Chairman, Dr. Davies Ibiamu Ikanya, on Monday at the party’s State Secretariat in Port Harcourt, committee Chairman, Prince Peter Odika, said the committee was able to list 150 sins committed against APC by PDP leadership and members in the course of the ongoing campaign for the 2015 elections.

“These sins revolve around attacks against APC faithful, billboards, and LG Secretariat by the misguided PDP elements in Rivers State ahead of the March/April 2015 general elections,” Prince Odika, who is the Rivers State APC Deputy Chairman, said. He pleaded that the report should be treated with the urgency it deserves before PDP engulfs the State into crisis that will not only send more APC members and other innocent persons to their earlier graves but also truncate the country’s nascent democracy.

Prince Odika disclosed that at the top of the list is the violent disruption of APC’s campaign rally in Okrika last Wednesday, which culminated in the death of a policeman. He alleged that the attack was principally targeted to eliminate the party’s gubernatorial candidate, Dr. Dakuku Peterside. “If they had succeeded, these enemies of our democracy would have engulfed the State in an unprecedented crisis the end of which no one could have predicted,” he said.

Receiving the report, Dr. Ikanya congratulated Prince Odika and his committee for a job well done. He assured them that the aim of setting up the committee would be actualised as the report would be sent to the United Nations, Amnesty International, ECOWAS and other major international bodies without delay.

“I commend the Inspector General of Police, Alh. Suleiman Abba, for directing that the Okrika attempt on our lives should be investigated. We wish that those behind this devilish attack are promptly arrested; if not our lives will not be safe anymore,” Ikanya said.

Looking ahead to the elections, the party chairman said: “To the people of Rivers State, the choice of stopping further promotion of violence lies in their hands by ensuring that all the candidates fielded by PDP in Rivers State are voted against to punish them for making our State a mockery before the international community. The choice before them is to choose between darkness and light, devil and God, between occultic forces and Christianity, between democracy and anti-democracy forces. The choice is ours to make.”

Ikanya appealed to the international community to come to the party’s aid, saying: “We can no longer fold our arms and watch while we are being viciously attacked and slaughtered by people whose mission and vision in politics is to spread violence as their own way of grabbing power, having seen that they have been overwhelmingly rejected by the electorate. What makes the situation more pathetic is that security agencies in Rivers State, including the police and the Department of State Security (DSS), have failed to make any arrest or call the PDP leadership to order simply because they are controlled by the PDP-led Federal Government, which is desperate to take over Rivers State at all cost.”

The fact-finding committee inaugurated on 19th January, 2015 had Prince Peter Odika the Deputy Chairman of Rivers APC as Chairman, Barr. Sogbeye C. Eli, the Rivers State APC Youth Leader, as Secretary. Other members were Chief Emeka Bekee, Secretary of Rivers State APC; Evangelist (Mrs.) Carol Nagbo, Women Leader; Chief Eze C. Eze; Hon. Israel Asiamaka, Okrika Chairman of APC; Chief Victor Ere, Andoni APC Chairman; Hon. Ojukaya Flag-Amachree, former Asaro-Toru Local Government Chairman; Hon. Awongo Ikalama, Chief of Staff to the Speaker of Rivers State House of Assembly; and Chief (Barr.) Obinna JK Chukwu.

Long Live APC!

Long Live Rivers State!!

Chief Eze Chukwuemeka Eze,

SSA on Media and Public Affairs to the State Chairman, APC Rivers State.

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Attan calls for the revival of reading culture

Posted on February 20, 2015. Filed under: Uncategorized |

Attan calls for the revival of reading culture

The chairman, correspondent chapel of the Nigerian Union of Journalists Imo State council, Mr Attan Agbkwuru has called on the public to imbibe the culture of reading and giving books as a gift.

ome ihe jide ofo ! Afo

Mr Attan made the call at the launch of two literary works –‘ Ome Ihe Jide Ofor Afo and Anthology of African Poetry’ authored and edited by Steven Abara Obinna, the convener of the event who is a Nigerian Playwright, Novelist and Poet based in Canada.

Continuing, he noted that people hardly give books as a gift again, and advised that to encourage reading, ‘we must develop the habit of giving book as gift, and not money all the time.

He commended the author of the books for distinguishing himself by writing the books and urged others who have the flair for writing to borrow a life from what Mr Stephen has done, and observed the Indian proverb which says, if you want to live forever ‘plant a tree, have children or write a book. “What Stephen has done is a serious encouragement, challenge and we must be courageous enough to accept it”, Mr Attan stated.

Dr. Dan Chima Amadi, a senior lecture at Federal University Owerri in his review of the play said: “The play is about the tragedy of an Igbo girl, Chinwem who in desperate bid to win a husband and acquire a matrimonial home accuse falsely a maternal niece Obika of raping and impregnating her for a deed committed by fifty year old sleek and crafty Odenga, a palm wine taper”.

According to Dr Dan, “what make the play memorable are the socio-political issues it addresses. In an age of mass insincerity, the playwright must be commended for refreshing our memory and warning us of the evil of fighting “a war of blame” as Chinua Achebe puts it.

“It is also a signal for those aspiring to lead in all levels of government to consider and turn a new leaf. The badge that gives Nigeria a bad name must be put away. Since it is a play first published in Canada, the playwright is standing up as the county’s ambassador. Stephen Abara is all for universal truth and justice as that is what the play aspires to change and sustain”, Dan declared.

Mr Alexander Abara in his vote of thanks on behalf of the convener of the event, thanked all for honouring the invitation extended to them. “We are grateful, for it is not easy to find out time to come. I pray God to grant you all safe journey to your various destinations”.

Other side attractions at the book launch organized recently include recitation of selected poems by the Playwright, other poets as well as a dramatic dance to sound track of the play.

Source: Nwaorgu Faustinus

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Celebration Galore: UNESCO World Book Capital School opens in Port Harcourt

Posted on February 14, 2015. Filed under: news |

Celebration Galore: UNESCO World Book Capital School opens in Port Harcourt

It was celebration galore in Part Harcourt as pupils of Banham Primary School, Aggrey Road, were during the week moved to the UNESCO World Book Capital Model Primary School situated at Moscow Road in the Rivers State capital. The formal commencement of academic activities in this world-class school ranked as one of the best in sub-Saharan Africa marks the fulfillment of yet another promise by the State Governor, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi.

The UNESCO World Book Capital School is one of the newly constructed 20-classroom school blocks built across the State by the Amaechi administration as part of its efforts to expand access to education by pupils across the State. The State Government had on 16th January 2015 commenced the movement of pupils from old schools to the newly constructed one-storey 20-classroom blocks which Amaechi promised to deliver before handing over power on May 29.

Pupils of Banham Primary could not contain their joy upon seeing the facilities at the UNESCO World Book Capital School, their new place of study. The school is well equipped with the state-of-the-art facilities like the sick bay, library, music class, science laboratories, and ICT, etc.

The Head Teacher of the school, Mrs. Ibiene Ereme, said that she was short of words to describe the kind of facilities in the school. She said that the teachers and pupils can now settle down to teach and learn as the conducive environment provided by the State Government will make teaching very easy and learning fun. Mrs. Ereme, who was full of commendation for the State Government, promised that the teachers would do their best in bringing up properly educated children in the new environment.

On their part, pupils of the school also lavished praises on Governor Amaechi for providing a conducive learning environment for them. They said that the new school cannot be compared to where they were coming from, observing that the new environment would make them to study harder and aim high in life.

Chairman of the State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), Sir Ali Oruitemeka, said the pupils were moved to the new structure because the environment is more conducive for learning. He stated that the upsurge in the enrolment of pupils into Government-owned schools in Rivers State necessitated the construction of 20-classroom blocks across the State. The schools are well equipped with books and e-books. They are being used by the State Government to promote reading culture among pupils and students. Every pupil of the schools has a reading period as pupils are made to pick a book, read and summarise during the book review segment.

It would be recalled that UNESCO, moved by the revolutionary feats of Governor Amaechi in the education sector, crowned Port Harcourt the 2014 World Book Capital City in April 2014, beating ten other great cities that include Oxford in England and Moscow in Russia. Governor Amaechi thereafter promised to build a world-class primary school to commemorate the feat – a promise which he has now fulfilled with the formal opening of the UNESCO World Book Capital School, Port Harcourt.

Amaechi’s feats in the area of education that moved UNESCO to choose Port Harcourt as the World Book Capital City are unequalled by any African leader, either in the past or present. His administration has churned out over 500 Model Primary Schools and 24 Model Secondary Schools that are termed to be better than some universities in Africa. It has also employed about 13,000 teachers, offering free education with free books as part of a strong vision to promote and sustain activities that would make promotion of literary activities and make literacy a staple in the State’s agenda.

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Aunty Grace flogged me for eating on the road

Posted on February 10, 2015. Filed under: Opinion | Tags: |

Aunty Grace flogged me for eating on the road

By Odimegwu Onwumere

Aunty Grace flogged me that day. I’ve ever lived to remember that. It’s the day grandmother sent me to the market. She said that I should use the Kobo and buy moi-moi and eat. It’s when moi-moi was foiled in plantain leaf. Milk cup wasn’t then used to make moi-moi.

When Aunty Grace caught me on the bush path eating the moi-moi while going home, she leveled the entire cassava stem in the nearby farm on me. She said that I was a disgrace to her brother, who’s my father. She said that her brother was a disciplined and a middle class man.

When passersby came to my rescue, she said I should promise her that I would never eat again on the road all my life. That caution over 30yrs stuck to date. But to my chagrin, I see well-dressed persons eat, trekking on the road, either masticating corn, plantain chips or licking orange or something. I’d thought that Aunty Grace was wicked, but she saved me from this nuisance.

When I brought this experience before friends on Facebook recently, a lady who resides in Canada opined that she did not see anything wrong in eating in the streets, but it all depends. “I don’t see anything wrong in eating on the road. So long as you are doing it responsibly. For instance on Thursdays, I’m so busy that the only break I have is just 10 mins.

“And that break is walking from class to work which is approximately 10 mins. Shuffling food down my throats as I rush to work is the only solution, if not, I will have to wait till I get Home. There are so many people their lives are like that, especially in the developed worlds…

“You get so busy that sitting down to eat during the day is a lot of wasted time…. Here, we eat in classes. But how dare you eat in the class in Nigeria, especially when the lecturer is teaching!” she said.

A diplomat with notable organisations around the globe said that we Nigerians were raised up with the view that it does not add up to eat in the streets, but reiterated that eating food deserves some dignity too.

“Well I was shocked arriving in New York for an international assignment and seeing all my colleagues drinking their oatmeal along the street and heading off to work! I couldn’t adjust as I had to learn how to not take breakfast at home but either at work or buy a carry-food box for my breakfast. To see a papa bom-boy drinking oatmeal or tea and biscuits along the road took a lot of adjustment for me,” the diplomat expressed.

The diplomat continued, saying, “Well I returned back to Nigeria for short-term assignment with the UN in Abuja. Since I formed the habit of being at office at 7am I continued that way showing up at work by 7am with my oatmeal cup and biscuits which I will be eating heading up the stairs or the lift. This was before the BH bombed the place!

“So one day one hard-nosed and no-nonsense Secretary asked me this question; “Dr. make you no vex. I wan ask you question”. And I said, “Yes”. Then she goes on this way; “Oga wetin dey drive you away from the house that you show up here every 7am drinking oatmeal, abi you no get wife for house? If you no get, please let us. This is embarrassing for a big oga like you”.”

The man said that he just laughed but she went on saying it is serious. So this madam secretary has already judged him and his status and placed him in the category of big man who shouldn’t be found racing to office too early and on top of that taking oatmeal breakfast to office.

“Big Oga takes time to eat at home the breakfast prepared by the wife. In fact every big oga must be married! Culture is variegated and shaded so much – diversity doesn’t capture it,” he enthused.

However, if you ask me to mention a people who have manners and attitudes to lose, I would mention the West. Laws and laws in that place have caged the people to be respecters of laws but abandon the moral and morale etiquettes.

Of what glamour does it add to a man to wear his clothes in the street because he wants to be quick to office? My people, amorality has no maternal home. Diplomacy has to go in line with decency. Decorum should not be subjected to repression and we call the later civilisation or lifestyle.

I was taught to always uphold decorum and will never distance myself from morality. It is important that the dignity of human being is upheld all the time. Countries should teach their people how to live a life of constructive and co-operative.

Eating in the streets is madness sound, just as we have wave sound. If films have decorum in order to reach to a wider audience, why can’t human being be respected and given orders that should elevate their status instead of denigrate them.

Odimegwu Onwumere, Poet/Writer, Rivers State. (apoet_25@yahoo.com). Tel: +2348057778358.

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2015: Dakuku Peterside’s Victory a Foregone Conclusion, says Rivers APC

Posted on February 10, 2015. Filed under: Press Release |

 2015: Dakuku Peterside’s Victory a Foregone Conclusion, says Rivers APC

  • Euphoria in Opobo/Nkoro as Campaign Train Hits Home

Hon. peterside RoadmapThe Rivers State Chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has described the victory of the party’s gubernatorial candidate, Dr. Dakuku Peterside, as a forgone conclusion.

The State Party Chairman, Dr. Davies Ibiamu Ikanya, made the declaration while commenting on the unprecedented crowd that turned out on Saturday to receive Dr. Peterside as his campaign train hit home.

“It is often said that a prophet is not honoured in his community but Dakuku Peterside has proved to be an exception. The unprecedented crowd of men and women, young and old – including non-indigenes – in Opobo/Nkoro Local Government who in unison assured Peterside of their support indicates that his victory in the forthcoming governorship election is a foregone conclusion by the grace of God. It was particularly touching to see elderly women of age 70 and above while donating their savings to Peterside’s campaign fund and prayed that God who made their son to be the APC flag-bearer will ensure his emergence as the next Governor of Rivers State,” Ikanya said in a statement.

In the statement issued Monday morning in Port Harcourt, Ikanya wondered why the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is so afraid of election. “Postponing the elections from February to March and April will not in any way save PDP. It is just a matter of weeks; no matter the game plans of the Presidency and PDP leadership, nothing will change the plan of God,” the Rivers APC Chairman said. He restated that the governorship slot was allotted to Riverine Rivers based on equity and fairness as APC believes that power must rotate. “Anybody working against the candidature of Dakuku Peterside is an enemy of fairness in Rivers State,” Ikanya stated.

At Saturday’s campaign stop in Opobo, all the speakers, including Hon. Michael Donald Igolima the CTC Chairman of Opobo/Nkoro LGA, Mrs. John Africa spoke for Opobo Elderly Women, Chief Sullivan Akachukwu, who spoke for the non-indigenes; Dr Sofiri B. Peterside, who spoke for the youths; and Hon. Maclean B Uranta, a community leader and former Chairman of Opobo/Nkoro  LGA, supported the candidature of Dakuku Peterside on behalf of their groups.

Dr. Sam Jaja, a member of the Board of Trustees of APC, who is also a son of the area, spoke on behalf of the Opobo Community. He thanked the State APC leadership for considering Opobo/Nkoro worthy to be given the office of the Governor of Rivers State. Jaja described the event as a tip of the celebration that would be witnessed during the swearing-in ceremony of Dakuku Peterside as the Governor of Rivers State come May, 29th, 2015.

In his speech, Director General of Rivers APC Campaign Organisation, Chief Victor Giadom, emphasised that no matter the date of the election as fixed by INEC, what matters is that Dr. Peterside will be sworn-in as Governor on May 29th, 2015, and General Muhammadu Buhari as President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Thanking his people for their love and support, Dakuku Peterside said it would be unfair to ask him to campaign in his own place as his initiatives exhibited in various projects in the area attest that he is a good representative of his people in all the offices he has so far occupied on their behalf. The offices include as Chairman of the Local Government, when he was declared as the Best and Most Outstanding Chairman in Rivers State, as Commissioner of Works under the administration of Governor Chibuike Amaechi, and presently as a member of the Federal House of Representatives and Chairman of the Committee on Upstream.

Dr. Peterside publicly conveyed his people’s appreciation that out of the 23 local government areas it was Opobo/Nkoro that was chosen and “God decided that a son of this area be chosen to be the next Governor of Rivers State.” He reassured all Rivers people including the non-indigenes, of the commitment of his administration once elected to continue the legacies of Governor Amaechi, “including empowering all Rivers State people, of which the non-indigenes are an integral part, through my Four-Point Agenda titled ‘Road Map to Prosperity’ for the people of Rivers State.” The APC flag-bearer explained that the Four-Point Agenda aimed at taking Rivers State to the next level include Public Sector Accountability and Security of Lives and Properties; Employment Generation and Wealth Creation; Social and Human Capital Development and Empowerment; as well as Institutional and Physical infrastructure Development and Food Security.

Dr. Peterside thereafter presented his running mate, Hon. Honourable Asita O Asita, to the huge crowd. Hon. Asita in his remarks assured the people that the forthcoming Peterside administration would develop Opobo/Nkoro, including reclaiming the land for roads and other projects. He thanked the community for giving APC a person of Dakuku Peterside’s caliber and assured them that they would be adequately rewarded.

Long Live APC!

Long Live Rivers State!!

Chief Eze Chukwuemeka Eze,

SSA on Media and Public Affairs to the State Chairman, APC Rivers State.

09-02-15

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