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U. Best Hails Araraume’s Emergence, Attributes Victory To God



A frontline political associate, a die-hard loyalist of distinguished Senator Ifeanyi Araraume and Amauzuari, lsiala Mbano LGA born Hon. Jerry Ukachukwu Nwokoro (aka UBEST)  has described the Friday, 6th November 2020 Federal High Court of Owerri judgment which upheld Ararume as the authentic and duly nominated candidate of lmo APC for the lmo North senatorial bye-election as a victory for democracy, for lmo North Senatorial District and the good people of Amauzuari.

While fielding question from a select group of Journalists in Owerri, the lmo state capital shortly after the judgment, the Umuahia based, lmo state born Philantopist congratulated senator Ifeanyi Ararume for the hard-won and long-expected victory. While extolling the wisdom of the Federal High Court justices who presided over the matter and subsequently delivered the judgment, UBEST further described the historic judgment as a reflection of the mindset of the generality of the good people of Okigwe zone and a confirmation of the dictum that the judiciary is the last bastion for the common man. He further likened the judgment to a Daniel presiding over the Federal High Court which, though sat in Owerri, but critically looked at the case before it on its merit, ignored the overbearing influence and antics or pressure and allowed the majority decision of APC delegates in Okigwe, lmo North senatorial District who voted for Senator Araraume to prevail by their judgment.

By the judgment, Nigerians and lmolites have renewed the confidence they reposed in the judiciary which before now, was under serious arguments and embroiled in several strings of doubts following their perceived and alleged cash and carry judgments, he cited his Amauzuari people particularly who in his words are core loyalists of Araraume because of their firm believe in Araraume’s human capacity development but became despondent right from the time Sir Frank Ibezim who they strongly believe was foisted on the party by some powerful elements within its rank in lmo state even when it was obvious he was not qualified and lacking in capacity to represent lmo North in the Senate based on the report of the screening Committee.

In the contention of UBEST, Ararume is one man who abhors injustice and is always prepared to fight injustice to a logical conclusion.

It will be recalled that during the count down to the lmo North senatorial primary election by APC, about 11 aspirants including Senator Ifeanyi Godwin Ararume (KSJI), chief Sir Mark Uchendu, Hon Chief Athan Achonu, Rt. Hon Dr Acho lhim, Hon Matthew Omegara, chief Eze Okoro,  Sir Frank Ibezim and others participated. In line with the electoral Act (as Amended) screening and Appeal Committees were constituted with their individual statutory roles or terms of references duly outlined. It was expected that before an aspirant would emerge as a candidate of any political party, the nomination form of the aspirant must be thoroughly screened.

This Fundamental aspect of the Electoral Act was dully carried out by the screening Committee, which outcome saw to the disqualification of Acho Ihim, Chikwem Onuoha,  sir Frank lbezim, Mark Uchendu, Eze Okoro chief Ogueri, Athan Achonu and others. The screening Committee in their findings discovered that the aforementioned aspirants including Frank lbezim who joined lmo APC from their former parties did not show sufficient evidence or proof of membership of APC for a minimum of twelve calendar months or a waiver to enable them to contest for the nomination as a senatorial candidate. The committee rather cleared Senator Ararume who is very meticulous both in business and politics, Adanne Chidinma Uwajimogu, and two other aspirants.

In a twist of fate, Frank lbezim had added encumbrance of not submitting the original certificate of his acclaimed University degree and birth certificate. In one instance, it was alleged that he claimed to have obtained a GCE certificate in May /June 1980, whereas such external examinations were held between November and December during the period under review. In another instance, he gave his age as 35, implying that he may have front-loaded his elemental body and spirit or was not even conceived in his mother’s womb by the time he sat for and passed the WASC examinations in May /June 1980 at Bishop shenanigans, Uboma Boys secondary school Etiti.

As if in agreement with the reasons given for his disqualification, which decision was subsequently upheld by an appeal Committee of APC, Frank Ibezim could not challenge his disqualification before the appeal Committee neither did he challenge it in any court of competent jurisdiction and never made any attempt to use available print, electronic and social media to address the issues bothering on communications and certificate forgery.

Though the National and state leadership of APC knew the implication of fielding a nonmember of the party or one not cleared by the Screening Committee for the Okigwe senatorial bye-election, the party leadership remained adamant,  obdurately and disregarded the extant and relevant sections of the APC party constitution as it concerns the nomination and qualifications of aspirants by submitting the name of Sir Frank Ibezim who was not granted a waiver,  and allowed him to contest for the primaries and submitted same to INEC.

An obviously aggrieved, embittered Senator Ifeanyi Godwin Ararume generally known to have made APC  popular by sincerely delivering  APC to victory having supported the re-election bid of Rochas Okorocha as governor in 2015, immediately challenged the unlawful declaration of Sir Frank Ibezim as flag bearer of lmo North APC Senatorial bye-election as an interested party in a suit pending before a Federal High Court.

Ararume as a loyal party man was busy exploring all peaceful avenues and available opportunities in resolving the impasse generated by the candidature of Sir Frank Ibezim as a result of the kangaroo primaries when one Mrs Uchenna Onyeiwu Ubá, approached the Federal High Court asking it to restrain the party (APC) leadership from submitting the name of Ibezim to INEC.

That was what prompted Ararume to join as an interested party in the suit meant to challenge the unlawful declaration of Ibezim as the candidate for the lmo North Senatorial bye-election. Hon Jerry Ukachukwu Nwokoro (UBEST) is excited that the judiciary did not compromise their integrity this time around as variously experienced in the elections petition tribunals and other judiciary matters.

He thanked the president, Mohammed Buhari, the lmo state Governor, Senator Hope Uzodinma, the leadership of the party, and the judiciary for not comprising nor interfered but rather watched and midwifed the delivering cum dispensation of justice seen and believed to have been done.

Hon Nwokoro Jerry prayed God to grant Governor Uzodinma the grace, wisdom, and ingenuity to navigate the socio-economic and infrastructural challenges starring us to our faces as a government and people as lmolites while urging him also to close rank and not to see the recent court victory of Ararume as a ploy to fight him in all frontiers but rather as an act of God divinely orchestrated to create a synergy to move the state forward.

He frowned at political jobbers whose stock in trade is to fan embers of disunity at every political strata which includes but not limited to Araraume, Uzodinma and Rochas Okorocha just to score cheap popularity.

 He thanked and  called on all lovers of democracy within the confines of  lmo North  senatorial zone to vote for APC and her candidate Senator Araraume in the yet to be announced Okigwe Senatorial bye – election by INEC.

He concluded thus, a vote for Araraume is a vote for the emancipation and Human capital development of the good people of Okigwe zone and Amauzuari in general.

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Benue Releases 210 Impounded Cattle To Owners



Benue State government has released to the owners a total of 210 cattle earlier impounded by the state Livestock Guards Task Force for violating its laws against open grazing in two Local Government Areas.

Commander of the Livestock Guards, Linus Zaki, said that 140 of the cattle were arrested at Mballgh council ward in Makurdi LGA while the remaining 70 bringing the total to 210 were impounded from Ggbajimgba in Guma LGA.

Zaki who handed the seized animals to their owners in Makurdi, encouraged them to respect the state’s law which banned open grazing since 2017, adding that they had fulfilled the requirements for violating the law.

“We can’t stop implementing the law so they (herders) should do the right thing by obeying the law,” the Livestock commander said.

Reacting, the State Chairman of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN), Risku Mohammed, who led some members of his executives to include his secretary, Ibrahim Galma and the owners of the cattle to receive the animals appreciated the Benue government for keeping the cattle safe.

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Mohammed admitted that the herders had trespassed the anti-open grazing law of the state as he stressed that some of them were yet to fully understand the law and that was why there were still pockets of violation in different areas of the state.

He appealed for time to enable the association effectively educate and orientate their members about the law, stressing the need for government to provide a pilot ranching for them to learn the rudiments.

On his part, the owner of the 140 animals, Abdullahi Haruna, said he had followed the due process for the release of his cattle and therefore came with vans to evacuate them.

While the owner of the 70 cows, Haro Audu, said his children had herded the cattle into Benue state but appreciated the peaceful release of the animals back to him.

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45-year-old man sentenced to death, 10-year imprisonment for murder in Ekiti



The Ekiti State High Court has sentenced a 45-year-old man, Mohammed Isiaka, to death by hanging for killing one Yakubu Jimoh.

The court, nonetheless, discharged and acquitted two others – Ismaila Okoro, 20, and Awolusi Bidemi, 23.

Delivering the judgment, Justice Lekan Ogunmoye, said, “The first accused is sentenced to death by hanging for murder on count one; and on count two, he is sentenced to 10 years’ imprisonment with N20,000 option of fine for unlawful possession of firearms.”

The judge also sentenced him to six months’ imprisonment for unlawful possession of the Nigerian Army uniform with an option of fine of N2,000.

He, however, acquitted the second and third defendants, saying, “In the case, there was no bit of evidence before me from which it could be inferred that the accused persons conspired to commit the offence of murder.

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“The only option open to me in the circumstance is to hold that the prosecution had not proved the offence of conspiracy beyond reasonable doubt against the accused persons. In the circumstance, the 2nd and 3rd defendants are hereby discharged and acquitted.”

According to the charge, the first accused committed the offence on or about March 27, 2017, at Igirigiri village in Ado Ekiti, when he murdered one Yakubu Jimoh contrary to Section 316 and punishable under sections 319 and 428 (d) of the Criminal Code Law, Cap. C16 of Ekiti State of Nigeria, 2012.

The prosecutor, Mr Gbemiga Adaramola, called six witnesses, while exhibits tendered included a gun, an army belt, a portrait picture, a mask, a human skull and bones, charms, among others.

The second and third defendants, who spoke through their counsel, Sunday Ochayi and Mr Busuyi Ayorinde, called one witness each.

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New dates, centres for post-UTME – OAU



New dates, centres for post-UTME - OAU

Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife, in Osun State, has fixed new dates for its post-UTME screening exercise.

Abiodun Olarewaju, the Public Relations Officer of the University read this in a press statement titled, ‘OAU fixes new post-UTME dates’ on Thursday.

The statement read in part, “All candidates are hereby informed that new dates, which starts from Saturday, 27th February 2021, will be conducted in two centers: Ile-Ife and Abuja.

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“The Post UTME Screening Exercise, which will be conducted in Ile-Ife centre, between Saturday, 27th February and Wednesday, 3rd March 2021 will be on OAU campus and its Centre for Distance Learning, in Moro, while the Abuja Centre will hold on Saturday, 6th March 2021 at the JAMB CBT Centre, Bwari, Abuja.

“In view of this, candidates are advised to log in to the to print out their Screening Slips which contain actual dates and venues for each of them, beginning from Sunday, 14th February 2021.

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