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Breaking:Buhari writes NASS, withhold aseent to electoral act Amendment

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President Muhammadu Buhari, has written to the National Assembly to withhold assent to the amendment of the 2010 Electoral Act.

The letter was read on the floor during plenary by the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki.

In a letter addressed to Senate President Bukola Saraki, President Buhari stated that he is declining assent to the amendment of the Electoral Act because the amendment to the sequence of the election in section 25 of the principal Act may infringe on the constitutionally guaranteed discretion of INEC to organize, undertake and supervise all elections provided in section 16(a) of the constitution.

He also stated that the amendment to section 138 of the principal Act to delete two crucial grounds upon which an election may be challenged by candidates unduly limits the right of candidates to a free and fair electoral review process.

President Buhari further stated that the amendment to section 152(325) of the principal Act may raise constitutional issues over the competence of the National Assembly to legislate over local government elections.

Earlier in February, the Joint Committees of the National Assembly agreed on some of the amendments to the Electoral Act.

The amendment of the electoral act facilitated the collaboration between the joint committees.

Both the Senate and House of Representatives agreed to the earlier amendment by the House of Representatives that the National Assembly election will come first, followed by governorship and state Houses of Assembly and finally the Presidential election which will now come last.

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Ganduje Donates N10 Million to EFCC, ICPC for Anti-Corruption Event

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The Kano State governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, has donated N10 million to the organizers of the National Anti-Corruption Marathon.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Crimes, ICPC, Athletic Federation of Nigeria, AFN and other stakeholders organized the first National Anti-Corruption Marathon, in honour of President Muhammadu Buhari, for his fight against corruption.

Announcing the donation when he received members of the main organizing committee in Abuja, Mr Ganduje promised that the Kano State Public Complaints and Anti Corruption Commission would collaborate with the organizers, as an official partner, to ensure success of the event.

He said his administration not only engaged in sensitizing the citizenry on the evils of corruption but also reorganized and strengthened its anti-corruption agency to offer optimal professional services.

“Before now, people find it difficult to access the services of the agency but we established offices across the 44 local government areas so that the services can be available to the common man”, the governor stressed.

“We also facilitated the recruitment of additional personnel and subjected them to training by professional agencies like EFCC and ICPC so that they can deliver.

“We also ensured cooperation with these agencies and that attracted international organizations to support us in reinforcing our anti-corruption system.”

The governor stated that as a result of the renewed professional and vigour of the state anti-corruption agency, highly placed individuals such as Permanent Secretaries in the state civil service and a commissioner were removed and prosecuted for involvement in corrupt practices.

Earlier, the leader of the delegation, Jacob Onu, told the governor that the organizers intend to “use the image and popularity of marathon races to create massive awareness and bring together all segments of the Nigerian population in support of Mr. President’s fight on corruption in all facets of national life”.

“This will strengthen unity among the citizens of this country and also satisfy the desire to exploit and harness the abundant talent in our youth for national integration,” Mr Onu said.

He added that the campaign was aimed raising national consciousness on the scourge and danger of corruption to the country and humanity in general.

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Buhari Approves New Salary Package for Police Officers

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President Muhammadu Buhari has approved a new salary package for police personnel.

Mr Buhari also assured that his administration will continue to give attention to the welfare and operational needs of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) with a view to restoring its lost primacy in the internal security framework of the country.

Mr Buhari said this during an audience in the State House, Abuja, with members of the Nigeria Police Service Commission and the leadership of the Nigeria Police Force on a “Thank You” visit.

The visit followed his approval of Rank Salary Structure Adjustment, by which salary, allowances and pension of police officers will be increased.

Mr Buhari regretted that the inability of the police in their constitutional role as the frontline force in the prevention of crime had led to military involvement in the maintenance of law and order throughout the country.

According to the president, “From Taraba to Sokoto, to the South-south, people don’t feel secure until they see the military. I am pleased to make the increase in salary and allowances in the hope that it will increase the performance index of the police and strengthen Nigeria’s internal security system.”

Mr Buhari observed that the more efficient the police is, the more confident the government and citizens will be.

According to him, “The military should be reserved for higher tasks. The police should be able to cope well with the challenges of armed robbery, kidnapping for ransom and such crimes. In every town and village, there is the presence of the police. From all these places, they should be able to forward first-class intelligence to you on which to act.

“There is a need to amplify the question of more men of the police, especially given the condition we are in–emergency in the North-east, pervasive insecurity and abduction for ransom and banditry in many parts of the country. I congratulate you on the success you recorded against criminals taxing people and stopping them from their farms. We are expecting more from you,” the president told the team.

A Commissioner in the Nigeria Police Service Commission, Clara Ogunbiyi, a retired judge, who represented the chairman, Musiliu Smith, had informed the President that the Rank Salary Structure Adjustment would enhance police welfare and morale.

The Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, also assured that the police would redouble efforts to ensure free, fair and credible elections throughout the country next year.

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Eid-El Maulud: FG Declares Tuesday Public Holiday

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The Federal Government has declared Tuesday as public holiday to mark the Eid-el Maulud.

The Minister of Interior, Lt.-Gen. Abdulrahman Dambazau (retd), made the declaration on Friday in Abuja in a statement by Dr. Mohammed Umar, Permanent Secretary of the ministry.

Dambazau called on Muslim faithful to align themselves with the Prophet’s teachings which border on piety, charity, tolerance and peaceful co-existence, among others.

He also called on all Nigerians to uphold these virtues with a view to overcoming the current national challenges facing the country.

Dambazau assured that the Federal Government remained committed to the unity of the country, and as such, would put adequate structures on ground towards ensuring that forthcoming general elections were credible, free and fair.

He wishes all Nigerians a joyous and peaceful Eid-el Maulud.

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