The Senate President, Bukola Saraki, has accused police officers of providing cover for thugs who are attacking his supporters in Kwara State.
Mr Saraki also accused the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, of ‘undue interference’ in the Kwara police command
He asked Nigerians to hold the police boss responsible if anything untoward happens to him and family members.
He said this while addressing the press at the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential Campaign Organisation headquarters in Abuja on Friday.
Describing it as a ‘sad development’ Mr Saraki said the police are giving cover to “people who are unleashing violence on our people”.
Mr Saraki presented three cases of what he described as police hostility to him and his supporters recently.
“Yesterday, after the APC concluded their campaigns in Ilorin, some of their supporters and thugs moved around town and in areas like Adewole/Adeta, Ile Otan and Ubandawaki/Pakata where they saw our people gathered holding their weekly ward meeetings, they disrupted the meetings by shouting their party slogan and when our people responded by mentioning our own slogan, they fired gun shots into their midst in Adewole/Adeta. They also inflicted matchete cuts on some of them. As a result of this attack, two people suffered bullet wounds.
“Also yesterday, these same APC thugs shielded by policemen went to my family quarters in Agbaji in Ilorin, and vandalised houses, shops and inflicted wounds with matchete on three people. All these destructions took place in the presence of policemen who came with them but watched without any care, as the APC thugs and supporters unleashed violence on our people.
“For me, personally, I believe the decision to attack people and properties in my family ancestral compound is a direct affront and attack on my person. And whatever signal these APC elements with support from the police believe they are sending is definitely sinister, uncivilised and unfortunate.
“Our people have filed reports of the incidents in relevant police stations in Ilorin but we have doubts that anything tangible and constructive will come out of these reports.”
Mr Saraki, serving out his second time as senator governed Kwara for eight years.
In the forthcoming election, he is vying to return to the Senate in his Kwara Central senatorial district after losing out in his bid to run for presidency under the PDP.
Mr Saraki and the police chief have a long-running battle which intensified in 2018 when Mr Idris shunned invitations to appear before the Senate plenary thrice.
The Senate President on Friday also accused the Mr Idris of controlling police commissioners in the state, “giving them order to work against him”.
Mr Saraki vowed to continue with his grassroots campaign with a caveat that Nigerians should hold Mr Idris responsible if anything untoward happens to him.
“The same Police under the directive of Inspector General of Police, Mr. Ibrahim Kpotum Idris yesterday commenced the transfer of Divisional Police Officers (DPOs) out of Kwara State. While the police are free to take decisions on the deployment of their personnel, we found the postings in Kwara State strange and more than a mere coincidence.
“It should also be noted that IGP has posted three different Commissioners of Police to Kwara State in the last six months. In fact, the previous and current Commissioner of Police in the State got strict instructions from the IGP not to relate or engage with the Senate President.
“The usual practice has been that the Commissioner of Police personally ensures the security of the Senate President whenever he visits his home state. That was the practice during the period of my predecessor and in my first year in office.
“We need to make it clear to the entire world that now that ward to ward campaigns is about to begin in the state and I am set to participate in that grassroots campaign as I have always done, nobody is sure what instructions Mr Idris has given to the police command in the state.
“Thus, the entire world should hold the IGP responsible if anything untoward happens to members of my family and myself.
“Do not forget that before now, this same IGP has tried several tricks to implicate me in some criminal charges. First, he arrested some cultists and was about to compel them to claim they worked for me.
“We exposed the trick early enough and the media also pointed out holes in his story. He quickly withdrew that. Later, he went on to the Offa robbery case and politicised the investigation in order to rope me.
“In the process of forcing suspects to implicate me, the principal suspect died in their custody. He has also not succeeded with that plot. Who knows what else he may have planned. Now, that full campaign is on, which requires my going round, I want the world to hold him personally responsible if anything happens to me.”
When contacted, the police spokesperson, Jimoh Moshood, did not respond to multiple calls Saturday morning. He has not responded to a text message as at press time.
Why 36 Governors will work for Buhari`s re-election
Governor Abdul’aziz Yari of Zamfara State has said the 36 state governors of the federation, would for many reasons work to ensure the re-election of President Muhammadu Buhari in the coming election.
Mr Yari, who is the Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) stated this on Tuesday in Abuja at the inauguration of the Forward With Buhari Grassroots Mobilisers Goodwill Ambassadors.
He said the organisation was being sponsored by the NGF, and that it was its brain child.
According to him, governors across the federation will rather vote for Mr Buhari even if they belong to opposition political parties.
This, he said, was especially so because Mr Buhari had done a lot for the governors irrespective of party affiliation.
Mr Yari said one of such things was the bailout fund which was paid to all state governors to off-set workers’ salaries and outstanding arrears.
The NGF chairman said this was paid across board, adding that the fund went a long way in improving the lot of people in the states.
He further said the Buhari’s administration had also embarked on infrastructural development across states, saying that this was another reason the governors were working to ensure his re-election.
He, however, tasked governors especially those in All Progressives Congress (APC) controlled states, to coordinate door-to-door campaigns across their states.
Mr Yari said this was critical to ensuring a landslide victory for Mr Buhari and all APC candidates in the coming elections.
“As governors, the responsibility is on us to work for the actualisation of President Buhari`s re-election come February 16,” he said.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, who was represented at the event by the Minister of Youths and Sports, Solomon Dalung, expressed happiness at the inauguration of the organisation.
Mr Osinbajo, however, noted that a lot needed to be done to sensitise the people at the grassroots on the achievements of the Buhari-led Federal Government across all sectors of the country`s economy and why he should be re-elected.
He stressed that the task ahead of the organisation was enormous considering the number of parties on the ballot paper and the need to guide the electorate to vote.
The vice president maintained that under the Buhari administration, the country`s economy was growing stronger while infrastructural development had continued across the country.
Earlier, Lawal Shuaibu, coordinator of the organisation, said it was established to give visibility, with sustained momentum, to the achievements of the Buhari-led administration.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the inauguration was attended by youths from across the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Major shake up in Nigeria Air Force, 72 senior officers redeployed
The Nigeria Air Force has redeployed a total of 72 senior officers comprising 27 Air Vice Marshalls, 30 Air Commodores, eight Group Captains, four Wing Commanders and three Squadron Leaders for operational efficiency and effectiveness.
NAF Director of Public Relations and Information, Ibikunle Daramola, announced this in a statement on Tuesday in Abuja.
Mr Daramola, an air commodore, said prominent among those affected by the new postings are: AVM Emmanuel Anebi who is now the Chief of Policy and Plans Headquarters NAF (HQ NAF) and AVM Nurudeen Balogun, who has been appointed as the Chief of Defence Policy and Plans at the Defence Headquarters (DHQ).
He listed others to include, AVM Charles Otegbade who has been appointed as the College Secretary, National Defence College, while AVM Rufus Ojuawo who is taking over as the Chairman Air Expo and International Liaison Secretariat.
“Other appointments include those of AVM Napoleon Bali as the new Air Officer Commanding (AOC), Special Operations Command, Yenagoa, AVM Oladayo Amao as the new Chief of Training and Operations at HQ NAF”, he said.
He said AVM Abdulganiyu Olabisi as the new AOC Logistics Command, Ikeja and AVM John Baba as the new AOC Tactical Air Command.
Mr Daramola further said AVM Mahmoud Ahmed has been redeployed as the Air Secretary HQ NAF and AVM Remigus Ekeh appointed as the new Chief of Standards and Evaluation at HQ NAF,
He also said AVM Ibukun Ojeyemi becomes the new Director of Policy at HQ NAF.
Furthermore, AVM Musibau Olatunji is now the Director of Air Engineering at HQ NAF, while AVM Peter Uzezi has been appointed as the new AOC Mobility Command.
“Also appointed are AVM Dahiru Sanda, who is now a Directing Staff at National Institute of Policy and Strategic studies, and AVM Ismaila Yahaya as the new Director of Training at HQ NAF, AVM Idi Lubo as Director NAF Transformation at HQ NAF,” he said.
Also redeployed was AVM Mohammed Yakubu, redeployed as the Chief of Logistics HQ NAF and AVM Emmanuel Wonah as the new Director of Sports at DHQ.
Mr Daramola also announced that AVM Paul Jemitola has been appointed as the new Director Research and Development at HQ NAF, AVM Anderson Kassimu as Director Civil Military Relations at DHQ and AVM Ibrahim Ali as the new Deputy Commandant, Air Force Institute of Technology, Kaduna.
“Meanwhile, AVM Musa Tanko is to take over as Director of Space Utilization at DHQ while AVM Musa Muktar has been redeployed as the new Chief of Aircraft Engineering at HQ NAF.
“In addition, AVM Maxwell Nnaji has been appointed as the new Chief of Communication Information Systems at HQ NAF,” it said.
He further said AVM Emmanuel Chukwu is now the new Director Earth Observation at Defence Space Administration and AVM Aliyu Bello as the new Chief of Staff at Headquarters Special Operations Command.
Mr Daramola said AVM Olusegun Philip is to take over as the new Director of Evaluation at HQ NAF, while Air Commodore Abraham Adole has been appointed as the Principal Air Staff Officer to the Chief of the Air Staff.
Air Commodore Ayodele Laoye is now Director of Procurement and Group Captain Jika Sanda is the Director of Legal Services HQ NAF.
He said the newly posted and redeployed senior officers were expected to take over their new offices not later than January 25.
Minimum Wage: ULC, TUC, NLC reject N27,000; hold crucial meetings
The National Council of State adopted the N27,000 on Tuesday.
The post Minimum Wage: ULC, TUC, NLC reject N27,000; hold crucial meetings appeared first on Premium Times Nigeria.
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