Former Governor of Plateau State, Senator Jonah Jang has faulted zoning arrangement between North and South and called for a review by political parties to reflect the reality on the ground in Nigeria, saying the far North has been unfair to the Middle Belt.
He added that the far North has never seen the Middle Belt as an integral part of the North even as he said appointment and removal of Service Chiefs are prerogative of the president.
Speaking with newsmen in Jos, Jang said zoning of the presidency by political parties has always been among the major tribes in the country while the minorities are sidelined and never have much say in the selection process.
“I am not a believer of rotation and I will tell you why before I answer your question, there is nothing like rotation in the 1999 Constitution as amended but political parties do it for convenience. But if you look at it anytime the presidency comes to the North because most parties have adopted North and South arrangement.
“If rotation is what Nigerians want, then the political parties must review it. When I was running for the presidency I went to see one of the top leaders in this country, it has always been rotation among the major tribes except Jonathan that got it because of the death of the late President Yaradua, I call it an accident because even to allow him to act before the death of President Yaradua was a war.
“What I was told by that leader was that as good as I may be, he could not see how a Christian minority can win the election in Nigeria, this is the first time I am saying this out because the time has come for us to speak out. So if we are going to continue with the rotation of presidency it has to be among the North, Middle Belt and the South, otherwise, no Middle Belter minority can rule this country, it is like the chapter for the minority to rule this country is closed if restructuring is not done.
“If political parties do not review this rotation arrangement, the Middle Belt cannot be joined with the North, it is unacceptable to us. The North means North West, we are not part of the Northern rotation, we want the presidency in the Middle Belt if possible in 2023,” he said.
On the call for the removal of Service Chiefs, Senator Jang who said their appointments and removal is prerogative of President Mohammadu Buhari, however, stated that his major concern has been their continued stay in service which makes it difficult for the young ones to move up.
“I have no quarrel with Mr President if he decides to keep Service Chiefs as long as he wants. My only area of concern is that if people are due for retirement and they are not retired it becomes difficult for the young ones to move up.
“If Service Chiefs move out when they are due for retirement or they are changed in accordance with the prerogative of Mr President vacancies are created and adjustment is made and promotions are done. Today the Service Chiefs have not retired, they have not retired themselves, it means people are just being promoted to keep the place quiet.”
According to him, there were quite a lot of retired generals and senior military personnel that could offer useful advice to the federal government on how to curb insurgency ravaging the north and other criminal acts across the country but added that they were never consulted.
“We are not consulted, perhaps if they didn’t consult me because I have become a politician, there are many retired generals and senior military officers that have enough experience that can advise on the best way to tackle the insurgencies.”
Aregbesola Insists On Digitalisation Of Security Agencies
The Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola said for the country to get things right with the security challenges in Nigeria, digitalization of intelligence gathering and monitoring is the best approach.
He emphasized that the world had gone past the manual process of operation as it is still being done in Nigeria presently.
Responding at the IT Audit Presentation on the Ministry of Interior and its Agencies to the Minister by Mr. Folusho Philips, Chairman of Philips Consult, Aregbesola pledged that he would make sure his Ministry put the necessary efforts and tools in place to ensure maximum capacity building for digitalization in the Ministry and the agencies under his watch.
He said “What distinguished the individual is how he can challenge and overcome situations”. He advised that Nigerian leaders should put in all their best to overcome the security challenges facing the country to distinguish the country to meet world digital standard.
The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Dr Shuaib Belgore, mentioned that significant efforts have already commenced to fully digitalize operations in the Ministry.
He stated that the Electronic Data Management System which would ensure digitalization of file records and implementation of the Human Resource Module of the IPPIS are set to take off in the Ministry. He however emphasized the need for more funding to be appropriated to further strengthen the Ministry’s Information Technology backbone.
The presentation identified that the Ministry and its agencies are yet to update in the digital world’s standard and needed to braze up to the world acceptable practices in the quest to curb insecurity and bring peace to the Nation.
The Directors commended the Minister’s initiative and efforts to see that insecurity is a thing of the past in Nigeria.
Present during the presentation are the Permanent Secretary, Directors in the Ministry, representatives of the agencies and the delegation of Philips Consultant.
”Its Not Our Building” Senators Reject Ownership Of Leaky National Assembly Building
Senate President Ahmad Lawan has urged Nigerians to stop bashing the National Assembly management for the parliament’s leaky roof, even as it is being maintained that the building housing the National Assembly belong to the FCTA.
During Tuesday’s downpour, the roof of the White House, where the two chambers of the National Assembly are started leaking, resulting to the lobby being taken over by flood.
Many Nigerians and civic groups described the incident as a national embarrassment.
Reacting to the media reports on the incident, the Deputy Whip of the Senate, Senator Sabi Abdullahi, raised a point of order, saying the reports breached the privilege of the lawmakers.
He clarified that the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA) was in charge of the maintenance of the complex and not the lawmakers against the belief of many Nigerians.
Abdullahi noted that the N37 billion earmarked for the renovation of the National Assembly complex in the 2020 budget was slashed to N9 billion in the revised one.
He said up till now, nothing has been done.
The Senate President said the roof leakage confirmed the position of the lawmakers that the building was due for renovation.
Lawan said: “The fact that there was a leakage to me is a clear testimony, confirmation and vindication of the position the national assembly took initially.
“Everyone knows that this place is overdue for rehabilitation. We went to see Mr President and he was gracious and he asked us to meet with FCTA, the owners of the building.
“Myself, the speaker, late chief of staff and minister of finance met to look for money for the rehabilitation of the national assembly.
“When the N37 billion was approved, it was not a National Assembly budget, it was an FCDA budget.
“If this place leaks, we are not holding our democracy with the respect it has. We expect the press to inform the people responsibly.
“This house is the house of Nigerians. It belongs to Nigerians and it deserves to be rehabilitated.”
Guest Flees As Hotel Uncovers Murdered Female Companion
The Kwara State Police Command has begun searching for a man who allegedly killed a lady in a hotel in Ilorin, the state capital, about three weeks ago.
The suspect, whom the police identified as Adegboye James of Okelowo Street, Ede, Osun State, was alleged to have murdered the lady whom he brought to the hotel on Adewole Housing Estate, Ilorin, on May 27, 2021.
The police, in a statement signed by the command’s Public Relations Officer, Ajayi Okasanmi, said the address given by the suspect was fake and could not be traced.
He called on members of the public whose daughter or female relation was missing since May 28, 2021, to check the Homicide Section of the State Criminal Investigation Department for possible identification of the corpse.
The statement read, “On May 28, 2021, around 7.30pm, we responded to a call from one Olalekan Anafi, the supervisor of Premium Diamond Hotel, in the Adewole area of Ilorin that on May 27, 2021, around 2pm, one Adegboye James, lodged at their hotel.
“The said Adegboye James went out and came back with a lady. The said Adegboye James later checked out of the hotel without the knowledge of any of the hotel staff.
“In the morning of the following day when nothing was heard from the room occupied by the said lodger, a spare key was used to open the room and the hotel was confronted by the dead body of the lady.
“Investigation into the incident is already at an advanced stage as ordered by the Commissioner of Police, Kwara State, CP Mohammed Bagega, to arrest the lodger whose name and address as reflected in the hotel’s logbook is fake.”
In another development, the Kwara State command of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps said its operatives are searching for a motorist who allegedly cut off the hand of a seven-year-old Alimanjiri student, Usman Abubakar, of Malam Aliu Adamu School, Patigi, in the Patigi Local Government Area of the state.
A statement by the Public Relations Officer of the NSCDC, Babawale Afolabi, said the child was allegedly kidnapped together with his schoolmate by the unknown motorist, who promised to take them to where they would eat on Monday night.
Babawale said the suspect, who is now at large with the boy’s hand, later escaped into the bush.
He said the victim lost much blood and was treated at the Patigi General Hospital.
The PRO said the NSCDC had commenced investigation into the incident.
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