TRANSFORM NIGERIA CITIZENS INITIATIVE
As the residents of Anambra state go to the poll tomorrow, the eyes in the world will be glued to the state for very obvious reasons. This is a state that gave the world her foremost literary giant, Chinua Achebe, the legendary Chukwuemeka Odimegwu Ojukwu and the Pan Africanist, Nnamdi Azikiwe.
Without mincing word, Anambra State election will be the parameter with which to gauge the conduct of 2015 election and just one body will decide how the pendulums of the election will swing– the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The candidates of this election are all heavyweights in their individual capacity. They all have what it takes to win the election, but one winner must emerge; and this is where INEC will decide if the true winner duly elected by the people will emerge.
There have been accusations and counter-accusations of INEC playing a ready script to favour a particular candidate. The electoral body must prove that it is not a pen in the hands of any writer to script the results.
This is a clash of titans and all the candidates transverses the length and breadth of the state, seeking for votes.
Transform Nigeria Citizens Initiative congratulate all the candidates for the way and manner they comported themselves throughout the campaign. The peaceful nature of Anambrarians was again brought to the fore yesterday as the famous commercial city of Nnewi became the busiest place in the world. All the leading contestants in Saturday’s guber elections descended on the town and campaigned within touching distances of each other- PDP at St Andrews, APGA at Nkwo Triangle and Labour at Anaedo Hall. No rancour or violence, just do your thing and let me do mine as Nnewi town was brought to a standstill. Politicians from other geopolitical regions need to learn from the maturity of Anambra guber candidates.
This is an election of the people, not for INEC or the military. The security agencies should be professional and neutral and no one should rig the election under any guise of Federal might or power of incumbency.
Since the return of Democracy, this will be the first election that will be conducted in the absence the leader of the state and Ndigbo in general, Chief Odimegwu Ojukwu, Ikemba Nnewi; the politicians should therefore not stain his memory with any act capable of tarnishing the image of the state. We call on the people of the state to exercise their franchise and choose whom they want to lead them in the next four years. The days of sitting in beer parlours gnashing their teeth at the failure of government can only be put to an end by their active participation in the election process.
While the electorates exercise their civic responsibility, the military must not be used to intimidate them under the guise of keeping the environment secured; neither should the candidates move about with their reckless convoy in ways that threaten the peaceful conduct of the election. The National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) members should not be dragged into the politics of rigging, just as INEC must not delay the payment of the ad-hoc staff in ways that will make them threaten to boycott the conduct of the election.
To reiterate: this election will be determined by the umpire, INEC, and they cannot afford to fail Nigerians at this crucial moment. We have positioned our observers and journalists in all communities to bring first-hand information to us and we will not hesitate to tender such in court if the election is marred by fraud and irregularities. The days of bringing ballot boxes and papers to polling booth should not be experienced in this election, as the electoral body had all the time in the world to prepare for this election.
Anambra State that prides herself as the light of the nation must show to the nation the way to go by coming out en masse to vote for the candidate of their choice. Any act to sabotage this election through any means will not augur well for the image of the presidency and it is on this note that we call on the President, who is the father of all the candidates to allow INEC do their job freely, without interference in the spirit of statesmanship.
With the full knowledge that two people cannot govern a state, we urge all aspirants to refrain from making any inflammatory statement is capable of overheating the polity during and after the election period. They should adopt the spirit of sportsmanship and congratulate the true winner, when the election is deemed free and fair. The Journalists who will be covering the elections should also refrain from publishing results when INEC has not announced so; as well as online media owners who may be tempted to report results from polling units, as given to them by their reporters monitoring the election.
As Anambra goes to poll, let all hands be on deck to ensure that the vote counted belong to one man; one woman.
One man, one vote that is our plea…
Signed: Transform Nigeria Citizen Initiative
Date: 14 November 2013
On Transform Nigeria Citizens Initiative (TNCI)
Transform Nigeria Citizens Initiative (aka Transform Nigeria Movement, TNM) is a Non-Profit Organisation whose vision is to develop that critical mass of citizens who are not only aware of their civic rights but also understand the need to fight for such rights and demand accountability from the leadership
Nigeria’s political pastor and National President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) may be counting his days as President of the association, as some notable clerics have decided to call him to order over his reckless comment.
The group of clerics from the Niger Delta under the umbrella of Global Peace Relief Initiative, led by Prophet Jones Erue, lambasted Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, over what they described as the unacceptable comments made against them, following their attempts to reconcile the G-7 governors with the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
In a press statement released to that effect they stated that:
“We are disappointed that a leader could sit and watch his two children fight while the rest of us suffer only to come and blackmail those who take their time to seek solutions to the crisis.” They warned that no amount of blackmail or intimidation would deter them from the noble mission of rescuing the country from imminent collapse.
“It is surprising that Pst Ayo Oritsejafor, the CAN president will handle issues of immense gravity and national importance hastily, with levity and without discretion. The first and easiest thing to know about a man is his name; it is a pity that the CAN president does not know the name of the group of clerics he is addressing nor their affiliates.
“Expecting him to have minimal knowledge on what they stand for, will be tantamount to exerting too much pressure on his aging gray matter. We are begging his aides and personal assistants to do their job well and stop exposing this great man of God to disrepute.
“These eminent clerics and their affiliate, Global Peace and Relief Initiative have taken on a laudable project of consulting across all interest group and stakeholders concerning the Nigerian project. Nigeria is the only country we can call our own and as fathers we cannot fold our hands and watch intolerance and impunity destroy our nation.
“To place the records straight, we have not made promises to any persons and we have not used the name of CAN, we have an affiliate whose mission and vision best defines our activity. We are noble men and do not rail accusation on authorities.
“It is a pity that the handlers of the CAN president have allowed miscreants, to drag him into a show of shame, misinformed the press and over laboured the corporate affairs commission with a futile search.
“If we may ask, whose registration were they authenticating? A group they barely know its name? This is a faith based Non Governmental Organisation, NGO, with memberships spread across the nation. Our main business is advocacy, conflict prevention/ resolution and facilitation of peace projects whether individual, group, organisation or government. We create a good soil for developmental projects and people oriented policies to thrive
“For the CAN president to say CAN is apolitical is laughable, as the same president is involved in politics of calumny and name dropping. “The CAN’s statement as reported by the media does not represent the facts on ground but a mere imagination. Calling names at this critical period of the nation’s political development does not represent the responsibility expected of a great leader of Pastor Ayo Oritsejeafor’s capacity”
“We want to place it on record that the Bishops and Clerics in this body may not own private jets but are men of unquestionable character, dependable leaders, and stewards of peace and holders of reputable degrees. The leader of this group Prophet Jones Ode Erue is a highly respected both in political and religious circles. Many people have benefited from the peace initiatives by this great icon since 2002 till date.
“When men lack purpose and relevance, rather than encourage others with vision and purpose they become detractors of good and well meaning Nigerians. “ We are disappointed that a leader could sit and fold his hands and watch his two children fight while the rest of us suffer only to come and blackmail those who take their time to seek solutions to the crisis.
The forum wishes to state emphatically that no amount of cheap blackmail or intimidation can deter it from this noble mission to rescue the country from the imminent collapse which can be averted. “We are duty bound to restore peace and unity to our dear country, Nigeria.
” We will continue with the ongoing consultation with all stake holders in the task of putting Nigeria back to the road, to national unity and development”
If information reaching us is anything to go by, then the students of University of Uyo (UNIUYO) will be coughing N7,500 each for the damage done on the school property on June 12, 2013. According to a source who was privy to the meeting which was held today around 3pm between the Student Union Government (SUG) and the Governing council of UNIUYO, led by the pro-chancellor, Prof. Kimse Okoko, these decisions were reached:
1) The Vice Chancellor, Mrs. Comfort Ekpo who the students had demanded her sack was completely exonerated and not found culpable.
2) The Deputy Vice Chancellors were found culpable and directed to be warned in writing.
3) The Dean of Students’ and Chief Security Officer were found culpable and their appointments are to be terminated.
4) Students of the Faculty of Engineering are to pay a surcharge of N10,000 for allegedly staging the riot that led to the burning of school properties, while other students are to pay a surcharge of N7,500. This money is to be paid before resumptions while the students are to download an online form and sign an undertaking to be of good behavior. Plea by the SUG to make the money a flat rate of N5000 was rejected by the governing council
5. Fifteen students who were identified as Vikings confraternity were said to be the ring leaders and are to be punished with expulsion immediately “Ring Leaders” have been recommended for expulsion.
The SUG was however allowed to take care of the students’ transportation henceforth. According to our source, the damage done to the school was put at N122 million. It will be recalled that the students protested in the hike of their transportation fare from the Engineering department, an act which led to riot, where men of the Nigeria police force allegedly shot some students dead.
As at the time of filing in this report, the university is yet to make public the outcome of their meeting.