Top Nigerian Newspaper Headlines For Today, Sunday, 19th March, 2023
Good morning Nigeria, welcome to the Naija News roundup of top newspaper headlines in Nigeria for today, Sunday, 19th March 2023.
The Kano State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) have directed their supporters to march to collation centres of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
Naija News reports that NNPP supporters were ordered by the party’s presidential candidate, Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, while the spokesperson for the Gawuna/Garo Campaign Council, Malam Muhammad Garba, made the call for the ruling party’s supporters.
In a statement issued on Saturday, Garba said the call become necessary to enable party stakeholders guard against possible falsification or altering of results.
Similarly in a short video to supporters, Kwankwaso, the leader of Kwankwasiyya movement, asked all the party supporters to storm the centers to make sure that their votes count.
He claimed that from the results collated so far, his party is confident of winning Saturday’s governorship election.
He insisted that the votes must be accompanied from their respective polling units to Registration Area Collation Centres.
The immediate former Deputy Governor of Ekiti State, Otunba Bisi Egbeyemi, has reportedly died.
Reports obtained by Naija News revealed that Egbeyemi passed away in the wee hour of today at a popular Multisystem Hospital in Ado-Ekiti.
The Nigerian lawyer and politician served as deputy Governor of Ekiti State from 2018 to 2022.
Egbeyemi died at 79.
Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State and Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Ibrahim Yusuf Zailani allegedly clashed over the performance of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2023 election in Kaduna state.
According to Vanguard, sources close to the Sir Kashim Ibrahim House Kaduna revealed that the two senior citizens of the State parted on an uncomfortable note the previous night, after a party caucus meeting in the state capital.
”That was the first time we heard the Speaker to have openly quarrelled with the Governor. He and other party faithful were not happy with the sudden political development in the state in which the ruling APC was not winning votes as was the case in 2019,” a source said.
However, an aide to the Speaker has denied any rift between the legislature and the executive in the state.
Recall that the founder of Liberty Radio and Television Ahmed Ramalan Tijjanni had also alleged trouble was brewing between the Speaker and the Kaduna Government House.
Some of the results of Saturday’s governorship and house of assembly election have been uploaded by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) through Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS).
The failure of the electoral body to upload results during the February 25th, 2023 presidential and national assembly elections stirred criticism.
The decision of INEC on BVAS has seen the likes of the Labour Party (LP), Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and several others reject the outcome of the election.
Many critics refused to accept the excuse of INEC, which claimed that it had a technical glitch.
INEC, however, in preparation for the governorship election had promised to improve and make use of the device in the ongoing election.
According to Daily Trust, the result of Ward 001, Polling Unit 039, Yenagoa Local Government Area of Bayelsa, was uploaded via BVAS around 1:58 pm.
In the House of Assembly election, the All Progressives Congress (APC) polled six votes while the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) polled 13 votes.
Some suspected vote buyers in Kaduna State on Saturday attacked and injured officials of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Acting on intelligence information, the EFCC officials who were on election monitoring duty had stormed Kaduna State to arrest one Kabiru Musa who was seen in an amateur video allegedly inducing eligible voters by using his phone to transfer money into their accounts as they cast their votes.
However, as the EFCC team accosted him, Musa became unruly and screamed to attract the attention of his syndicate members, who descended on the operatives, using all manner of weapons that left some of them injured. It took great restraint for the operatives to ignore the unprovoked attack but insisted on arresting the suspect.
The incident happened at School Road, Unguwan Rimi Kaduna as confirmed to Naija News in a statement by the EFCC head of media and publicity, Wilson Uwujaren.
He added that as the team drove away with the suspect, their vehicle was pelted with stones and other dangerous objects that damaged the windshield and three operatives suffered varying degrees of injuries in the process.
Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has addressed newsmen after casting his vote on the ongoing gubernatorial election in the South-South State.
Naija News reports that Wike accredited and voted at his Obio Akpor Ward 9 Unit 7.
Speaking to newsmen, he said, “I can say they (INEC) have done very well unlike what we had on 25 February. They have improved more than what we had in February.”
On voter apathy, the governor said, “When the first election came and go, if people didn’t get what they want, they’re discouraged. And you can’t force people to vote.”
On his part, former Minister of Transportation and leader, All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers state, Rotimi Amaechi, slammed the police and INEC over the conduct of the election.
Former President, Goodluck Jonathan has urged security operatives in the country to apprehend and prosecute unidentified thugs responsible for the attack at the distribution centre of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Okodi Town, Ogbia Local Government Area, Bayelsa State.
Naija News understands that voting materials meant for Ogbia ward 2, ward 4 and ward 5, all in Ogbia Constituency were set ablaze at about 3:00am.
Reacting to the dire incident after voting at his polling unit at about 8:47am at his polling unit 039, ward 13 at Otuoke in Ogbia Local Government area, Jonathan told journalists that nobody should be allowed to mess with the electoral system in the country and go scott free.
He condemned and called on security operatives in the state to ensure the perpetrators of the criminal acts are brought to book.:
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Saturday announced the postponement of the governorship and state assembly elections in 10 polling units in the Victoria Garden City (VGC) around the Lekki area of Lagos State.
The announcement was made by the INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner, Segun Agbaje, while addressing reporters at the VGC.
Agbaje claimed that corps members deployed as ad hoc staff on Saturday were hesitant to enter the VGC estate as they alleged that they were held hostage in the presidential election held on the 25th of February, 2023.
He further stated that the commission’s ad hoc staff set up voting materials in front of the estate on Saturday but the estate residents claimed that hoodlums might disrupt the process, so they did not feel secure and could not cast their votes.
Agbaje said the situation was difficult for security agents to contain hence he and his team had to come to the area.
The Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike has claimed that a Director of Security of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) ‘breached security’ concerning the conduct of Saturday’s governorship election in Rivers State.
Wike stated this shortly after voting in his polling unit at Ward 9 of Rumuepirikom community in Obio-Akpor Local Government Area of Rivers State on Saturday.
He said the INEC’s security official he identified as Leebari, carried out that act in favour of Magnus Abe, the governorship candidate of the Social Democratic Party, SDP in Rivers who is from the Ogoni area of the state like him.
Wike explained that he does not want to go into details as this would cause heads to roll.
The presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP), Peter Obi, has said the ongoing governorship and state assembly elections recorded low turnout because of the outcome of the February 25 presidential election.
Obi said the results of the presidential election did not reflect the people’s wish, hence the voter apathy recorded in the ongoing elections.
He said in a chat with reporters at his Amatutu polling unit in Agulu, Anaocha Local Government Area of Anambra State on Saturday.
He said, “The electorates were discouraged to come to vote because of what happened in the last poll that did not reflect the people’s wish.”
The former governor of Anambra State said he observed voter apathy and “transactional politics” unlike the February 25 presidential polls.