2019: Why IBB chose to support Saraki over Atiku, Kwankwaso, others

Former military president, Gen. Ibrahim Babangida (IBB), recently declared his support for the presidential ambition of Senate President, Bukola Saraki stating that the Kwara State born politician has the right tools to lead the country.

Babangida stressed that as a former Head of State  and one of those who fought for the Unity of Nigeria, Saraki’s candidacy appealed to him due to the senator’s focus on three major issues which are security, unity and the economy.

“You spoke of three important things that are very dear to me and those of us who fought to keep this country together, the issues which are unity, economic development and security,” Babangida said.

The former army general stressed that as a former governor and current senator, Saraki is primed to lead the country based on his track record of success.

“You are much more than prepared because you have been a governor in a state, a legislator and a Senator. You have been holding the Senate for the past three years very well and the Senate has been working very well under you. I’m, therefore, convinced that you have what it takes to be president,” Babangida concluded.

Kwara youths show support for Saraki’s presidential bid ahead of 2019 general elections

In an effort to prove the popularity of Senator Bukola Saraki in his home-state, a Kwara-based group is mobilising youths to a Mass Rally in solidarity with the presidential ambition of the Senate President on Saturday, September 15, 2018.

Speaking to newsmen on Wednesday in Ilorin, the Convener of the forum, Mr Abdulmajeed Olanrewaju Oba, said the March became necessary owing to the immense contributions of to the state when Saraki was Governor of the state and senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Mr Olanrewaju Oba said: “It is going to be an unprecedented gathering for the celebration of Senator Bukola Saraki’s years of enviable leadership when we host the one-million-mass march around the state.

“The proposed March which will commence by 7 am in the morning of September 15, 2018, at Ibrahim Taiwo Junction, just in front of Mr Biggs, in Ilorin, Kwara state.

“We recommend a Dress code of Black Jeans and no specific colour of T-shirt to commemorate the occasion.”

Commenting on the personality of the Senate President, the youth leader who is also Patron of The Olanrewaju Oba Youth Forum (TOOYF), commended Bukola-Saraki for answering the call of teeming Nigerian youths to contest for Presidency.

Mr Olanrewaju Oba said: “Nigeria currently needs a competent and capable personality like Saraki to lead this country forward for saving the nation’s Democracy through his actions and deeds during the National Assembly chambers siege among others.

“We are thrilled by the prospect of having a leader like Senate President, Bukola Saraki as Nigeria’s President. He has all the qualities and we had thought having him will be something to be proud of. We know that with him Nigeria has a great future,” Mr. Olanrewaju Oba emphasized.

While encouraging other Nigerian politicians to emulate the leadership style of the Senate President, the convener said Kwara youths are strongly behind his ideas and ideals.

“Senator Bukola Saraki has distinguished himself as a leader of the masses and as a man we can trust. We are so sure of his capabilities and he is the best candidate for the job. This is basically why we are organizing the 1millionmass march for him.

“The manner in which Mr Saraki has been running the affairs of the upper chamber of the National Assembly was a pointer to his maturity and his ability to rule the country with a focus.”

Nigeria needs “digital” president in 2019 – Saraki

Senate President and PDP presidential aspirant Bukola Saraki says Nigeria needs a president that is “mobile, digital and has the capacity to plan for its people”.

Saraki made this known in Calabar while paying a courtesy call on the governor of Cross River State, Professor Ben Ayade, in continuation of his nationwide tour to meet delegates across the country.

The presidential hopeful maintained that his presidency will make Nigeria join the “new world order” in leadership.

Addressing the Cross River governor, Saraki said: “Your Excellency, I am here to seek the support of delegates of Cross River state. The world over, there is a new world order out there, a new world order that requires a new type of leadership and a certain requirement of a president that leads a country.

“A new order that requires a president that is mobile, digital, that has capacity that can plan for its people, that has a destination that he is taking his people to. Across the world people are waiting for when this new world order will come to Nigeria and the new order has come at this time.

“Nigeria cannot afford to make another mistake in leadership in 2019. We will not develop by chance or trial by error, rather they need a leader with a vision and he has a vision for the country.”

He maintained that Nigeria should not elect leaders based on sentiments but elect those who have proven capacity.

According to him, it is not just about voting out the APC, but about restoring and repairing the country.

To do that, Saraki said, Nigerians need a president who knows what the issues are. “Today we must grow this country and address the issues of hunger and deprivation out there,” the Senate President said.

Saraki explained that his experiences as a governor and senate president has prepared him for leadership, adding that he has demonstrated the courage, determination and spirit needed at this period in Nigerian history.

Speaking, Governor Ayade commended the Senate President for his visit to the southeastern state, maintaining that Saraki has the humility and intellectual capacity to lead the country come 2019.

Pledging his support, Ayade said that, having worked with Saraki during the 7th Senate, he is convinced the presidential aspirant has what it takes to lead Nigeria forward.

It’s time to have a president we can be proud of – Saraki

Senate President Bukola Saraki says Nigerians need a president that they can be proud of.

Saraki, who is seeking to contest the 2019 presidential election on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), said this when he visited delegates and party executives in Benue state to seek their support.

The number three citizen said he wants to become the next president because “Nigeria is at a crossroad”, and he wants to unite the country.

“It is time to have a leader that is capable, it is time to have a leader, when you see a president talk and stand, you will say I am proud that is my president,” Saraki said.

“I need your support to become the presidential candidate of the PDP and to become the next president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. It is time that we lead. It is time that we provide leadership for this country.

“See, when you need a friend, I am here at any time to support the people of Benue state. I have shown it and I will continue to show it, because today in Nigeria, we are at a cross road. We need to unite this country. We need to make everybody have a sense of belonging.

“We need to ensure that we are all sitting equally on the table of Nigeria. Nobody is going to protect us more than ourselves, nobody is going to develop us more than ourselves, nobody is going to care for us more than ourselves.

“It is our ambition because I know with your support, if I am there, Benue state is there. You know I will not allow any harm to come to Benue state.”

Saraki: It’s the turn of North-central to produce president

Senate President Bukola Saraki has said that his presidential aspiration is driven by an obsession for justice, fairness and respect for the rule of law.

“I want to be President so that I can ensure justice and fairness for everyone; I want a country where the rule of law will be respected by all,” Mr Saraki said on Monday in Makurdi, where he met with Benue State Working Committee of the PDP.

Mr Saraki’s visit was to solicit support for his presidential aspiration ahead of the 2019 general elections.

“We need leaders who are capable of representing all interest groups, and not a section of the country.

“My presidential ambition is a collective decision borne out of a desire to salvage the disunity that we are witnessing,” he said.

Mr Saraki said it was the turn of the North-Central geopolitical zone to produce the nation’s president, declaring that he was ready to provide quality leadership.

“As a zone, we have paid our dues. It is the turn of our zone to lead Nigeria to stability.

“We have gone through bad times. The nation has become crises-ridden; the killings are uncalled for and the Benue valley is the worst hit.

“There should be justice to every citizen, regardless of geographical location.

“Democracy entails freedom or rights of the people. Our rights should not be imprisoned,” he said.

Mr Saraki vowed to restore peace in the country if elected as president, and called on Benue delegates to vote for him during the party’s convention in October.

In a brief remark, Dino Melaye, a senator, appealed to the people of Benue to vote and guard their votes during elections, saying that they must promote and protect their rights to decide who led them.

In his remarks, John Mgbede, PDP chairman in the state, thanked Saraki and his entourage for the visit and promised that Benue would always vote for justice. (NAN)

Kwara State Governor prepares for life out of government house- picks PDP senatorial form

Governor of Kwara State Ahmed Abdulfatah, has picked up the nomination form for the Kwara South Senatorial District. He is seeking to contest on the platform of the PDP.

In a tweet via his handle, the Governor stated that his action was in response to calls by his people to ensure “effective, purposeful representation”.

The post read: “In response to calls by my people and in keeping with my strong desire to upscale the excellent work we have done in all three zones of the state, through effective, purposeful representation, I have picked up the PDP nomination form for Kwara South Senatorial District.

“Abdulfatah defected from the All Progressives Congress (APC) to the PDP On July 31, minutes after Senate President Bukola Saraki announced his resignation from the same party.

“Following due consultations and in response to calls by major stakeholders in the state, I have moved to the PDP because the APC can longer serve as a platform for achieving the aspirations and expectations of my people,” he had said.

WARNING! List of 12 states to experience flood in Nigeria

The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and the National Hydrological Services Agencies (NHISA) have warned that 12 states across Nigeria would soon experience flooding due to torrential rain falls. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the two agencies gave the warning on Friday, September 7, during an emergency stakeholders’ meeting held with relevant stakeholders in Abuja.

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The report said Clem Nze, the director of engineering hydrology at NHISA, listed the states to include: READ ALSO: Suspected herdsmen allegedly kill Adamawa PDP chairman, flee with head
1. Kogi
2. Kebbi
3. Niger
4. Kwara
5. Edo 6.
7. Rivers
8. Bayelsa
9. Delta
10. Taraba
11. Benue
12. Adamawa

While some of the states would be affected from the River Niger, the other would be faced from River Benue, the report warned. The report added that the expert also warned that the flood might be eminent, noting that all the indices that played out before the 2012 flooding had already manifested.

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Nze said that the decision to raise the alarm was to ensure preparedness among stakeholders and residents of flood-prone communities. He revealed that as at Friday, September 7, the height of River Niger in Lokoja was at 10.1 meters as against the 9.74 meters in 2012, adding that the continued to rise on hourly basis.

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He further said that the water levels were increasing due to the opening of the Shiroro, Kanji and Jebba Dams. “As at today, our hydro-logical measuring station downstream the confluence in Lokoja recorded a stage height of 10.1m and a discharge value of 21, 326 cubic metre per second as against lower values of 9. 74m and 19,762 cubic meters per second recorded on the corresponding date of 2012 when the flood occurred.

“From the foregoing, it could be said that all the indices that caused the 2012 river flooding have manifested, except spillage of water from the Lagdo Dam. “It would be noted that it was on September 29, 2012, that the maximum flood level of 12 .840m and the corresponding discharge of 31,692 cubic meters per second were recorded at our station in Lokoja, downstream the confluence.

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“By the 2018 seasonal rainfall prediction released earlier in the year, September 28, is the earliest cessation date of rainfall in Sokoto and Katsina while December is the earliest cessation date for the southern coastal cities. “The implication of this is that, the northern part of the country should be expecting more rains in the next three weeks,” he said.

Speaking earlier, Mustapha Maihaja, the director-general, NEMA said that the emergency meeting was called following the update on the flood situation received from NHISA and described the development as alarming and urgent. He said that the meeting would also review the situation with a view to classifying the possible dangers, assess preparedness at individual and collective levels.

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Maihaja said that this was to ensure that every relevant agency was ready for any eventuality, if the water level keeps increasing. “This is a serious meeting; we must put heads together to first classify the situation, whether it is still yellow or red. “If it is red, surely we should act and part of the acting is the suggestion to set up a committee of five groups of three personnel from various sector to visit the front line states.

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“It is for them to meet with the officials, go down to the villages that are really critically under threat and use all avenues to enlighten them to invigorate our enlightenment campaign electronically and physically to ensure that everybody is well informed as required by the law. “Secondly, we access our preparedness, informing our stakeholders so that wherever there is any equipment that is required, it is ready for deployment, should anything happens,” Maihaja said.

He called on state governments to provide alternative accommodation for those in the flood affected areas so that they do not camp in schools, especially as the schools are now in session. NAIJ.com earlier reported that the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMet) recently warned that many parts of the country were likely to experience flooding due to a shift in rainfall pattern caused by climate change.

Fit, Capable and relatively young- Saraki list require qualification for Nigeria’s next president

Senate President and Presidential aspirant under the PDP, Bukola Saraki, has said that Nigerians deserve a President that is fit,can relate well with the youth and with proven capacity and capability in 2019. Saraki suggestion the assertion in Abakaliki, the Ebonyi State capital, during the commencement of his nationwide “Meet the delegates” campaign starting from Ebonyi and Enugu States.

Saraki, who was given a very warm welcome by enthusiastic party loyalists and supporters in Ebonyi State during a reception organized in his honour at the Ebonyi State Banquet Hall, told his audience, which included Governor Dave Umahi, his Deputy, Barr.

Eric Kelechi, Speaker, Ebonyi State House of Assembly, former Governor of the State, Senator Sam Egwu, PDP state chairman and other stakeholders, that if elected he will run an inclusive government to ensure equity and fairness in the country.


He further told his audience that Nigeria is at a major crossroads in its developmental history and that at a “critical period such as this, the President Nigeria deserves must be the very best available with proven capacity, knowledge and capability.”

He congratulated Governor Umahi on his excellent performance in the state which led to his endorsement for a second term by the state PDP stakeholders and also seized the opportunity to request for similar endorsement by the Ebonyi state delegates to the PDP national convention.

In his response, Governor Umahi, praised the Senate President for his achievements as eight year Governor of Kwara State and President of the Senate since 2015.

He affirmed that from Saraki’s eloquent and excellent delivery before his host, they would seriously consider his request for the endorsement of his candidacy by the state delegates to the PDP’s National Convention.

Saraki’s aide questions APC spokesman’s competence, challenges him to national debate

The build up to the 2019 Presidential election is getting interesting by the day, as Yusuph Olaniyonu the media aide to the Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki, has questioned the competence of the Acting National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Yekini Nabena, who he described as an upstart.

Olaniyonu, who was reacting to a statement by Nabena on Wednesday, where the APC spokesman called on Nigerians to take Saraki’s quest for the nation’s presidency with a pinch of salt, described Nabena as a man who stays in Abuja but waits to sign press releases composed in Lagos.

The Special Adviser to the Senate President on Media and Publicity, in a statement on Wednesday, also challenged Nabena to a national television debate to issues the ruling party said borders on Saraki’s integrity, antecedents and capability on any television station of his choice.

It would be recalled that Nabena had on Wednesday described Saraki as somebody who “has repeatedly displayed his character as extremely selfish, deceitful, untrustworthy and unreliable. His only goal is to get to the top, stay at the top, ruin or wreck whatever he finds there or in the event of failure, collapse the system or process.”

Olaniyonu in his statement said: “The Senate President will not be distracted by the antics of an upstart who lives in Abuja but waits to sign press statements composed for him from Lagos.

“When his masters show their face, we will debate all the issues they have raised and the ones they may wish to even concoct.

“Dr. Saraki does not have any credibility issues except the ones concocted by these putative demagogues to whom the Senate President has become a nightmare.

“One should ask, what is APC’s business with an aspirant of another party?

“The truth is APC is scared stiff of the possibility of a Saraki candidacy. Fortunately, they have no role in deciding that.

“Meanwhile, Mr. Yekinni Nabena should know by now that many people in the media believe he is a robot and has no face.

“Here is an opportunity for him to come out of his hiding and come on a national television to debate all the issues he has raised with one of the aides of the Senate President.

“We hope he will take up this challenge and stop behaving like a masquerade. He is free to choose any independent TV station of his choice.”

“We will win Kwara for PDP in 2019”- Governor Ahmed

Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed, Kwara state Governor,  has expressed confidence in the ability of the current Central Working Committee of the state chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), to secure the state for the party in 2019.

 Ahmed stated this at the Government House, Ilorin, on Tuesday when he met with the newly Inaugurated Central Working Committee in his office, explained that “with the timber and calibre of the people that made up the party executive, the victory of the party is guaranteed”. 

Ahmed who saluted the maturity displayed in handling the harmonization process, tasked the new executive to workhard in ensuring entrenchment of good governance in the state. 

He added that peaceful atmosphere that greeted the harmonization process further confirmed the politics of all-inclusiveness the party structure is known for.

Earlier in his remarks, the party chairman, Engr Kola Shittu told the governor that they were in the Government House to familiarize themselves with the governor as the party leader in the state.