Below are the headlines found on The Daily Sun Online Newspaper for today, Thursday, 8th March, 2018.

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
“The problem in Nigeria now is that our democracy is receding and the international community needs to know this. Who says that the Army cannot take over in Nigeria? It is possible. So, let us not joke with our democracy, especially with the way they are going.”
These were the exact words of Dr. Ike Ekweremadu, deputy president of the senate while contributing to a debate on alleged high-handedness of some governors on the floor of the Senate, yesterday.
The no-love-lost relationship between some governors and senators in some states hit the front burner following a point of order raised by Ahmed Ogembe (Kogi Central) to draw the attention of his colleagues to the “increasing and alarming spate of political intimidation and violence in Kogi Central Senatorial District.”
Senators, in their various interventions, did not mince words as they denounced the misuse of power by some governors, a development they said could truncate the nation’s democracy.
The lawmakers particularly descended on Governors Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano, Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna and Yahaya Bello of Kogi states.
Ogembe recalled how thugs suspected to be acting on the instruction of Governor Bello invaded the venue of an empowerment programme for some women in his constituency.
The lawmaker claimed that some hoodlums also attacked his family house in Okene and that of his supporters.
“A lot of my constituents are lying critically injured and traumatised in hospitals across Kogi Central Senatorial District,” he also claimed
President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, who presided recalled how Governor El-Rufai personally supervised the demolition of a house belonging to Senator Suleiman Hunkuyi.
He described the development in Kogi State as a threat to the country’s democracy.
He said the Senate would be serious about the issue, arguing that if the problem was not nipped in the bud, other states would follow suit.
Saraki said: “I just came back from Ghana where they were celebrating 25 years of uninterrupted democracy, and as such, it something that we too will celebrate and continue to celebrate even more than that.
“It is not really just about Kogi State but it is clear from what we are seeing that Kogi is coming to a point where it is becoming a threat to our democracy and we are going to be very serious about it. It cannot be seen to be defying our democracy because this is not what our democracy is about.
“For the role that we continue to make in the comity of nations, we must be seen to make good examples to other parts of the world. We must get to the bottom of this; we must take action that must stop this thing from happening and we must condemn this in the strongest term because this kind of action is totally unacceptable.
“It cannot be allowed to continue because it just starts with one state. Some of us have been privileged to be governors before; we are almost 20 years in democracy. This cannot be the democracy that we should be talking about after 20 years; it is totally unacceptable. And we must make sure that we use this opportunity to address the issue.
“We saw the case in Kaduna State, how a governor could proudly say that he is going to bulldoze a house in Nigeria, at this time, and we are all still keeping quiet. These are things that we must condemn totally.”
Ekweremadu recalled how his former governor, Sullivan Chime, had a running battle with him for four years.
He also alluded to the face-off between Rabiu Kwankwaso and his successor, Ganduje of Kano State and how the former is unable to visit his state, despite his stint as governor for eight years.
“I want to tell our brother, Ogembe, that some of us passed through the route before but by the grace of God we are here and those oppressors are at home because it is God that gives power.
“In 2011 to 2015, I passed through something worse than what he (Ogembe) was telling us here. The then governor of my state, there was nothing he didn’t do to repress me. Traditional rulers were banned from coming to my house. I bought a car for the association of traditional rulers in my senatorial district and because they accepted that vehicle, the chairman was removed from office and dethroned.
“At a particular time, one community wanted to give me a traditional title. The government decreed that there would be no giving of traditional titles in that state for the next one year. So, the Commissioner of Police came to the place to enforce it.
“First, he came to my house to tell me that the governor said he should go and enforce the decree in Enugu State, that there should be no chieftaincy title for the next one year. And I told that Commissioner of Police to go to the venue and then come and tell me if it is something that he can stop. He went, came back and said it would take the whole of 82 Division of the Nigerian Army, Enugu, to stop it. And that chieftaincy title took place.”
“So, the problem in Nigeria now is that our democracy is receding and the international community needs to know this. Who says that the Army cannot take over in Nigeria? It is possible. So, let us not joke with our democracy especially with the way they going.
“We are talking of Kwankwaso who was stopped from going to his state, Kano, which he ruled for eight years. In Kaduna, Shehu Sani cannot organise a meeting, and we are talking of democracy.
“And somebody says this democracy is going to continue this way? It is not going to continue. People are holding meetings everyday on how to deal with each and everyone of us here. So, there is need for the international community to know this because they helped us to restore democracy to Nigeria. And some gang of people is trying to truncate the entire democracy. We are now second-class citizens not just in Africa but also even in West Africa, where we are supposed to be controlling.
“The only institution left to save our democracy is this National Assembly and we will never shy away from that responsibility, no matter the oppression, no matter the intimidation. Men will do whatever they want to do, but God will have the final say,” he added.
After a long debate, Saraki announced the constitution of an adhoc committee to investigate the alleged attack on Ogembe in Kogi State.
The membership of the committee is yet to be announced by Saraki.

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
The Lagos State government and the military have handed out a 48-hour ultimatum to truck owners, whose vehicles have lined up roads in the state to move them or face the full weight of the law.
The decision was the outcome of the meeting with stakeholders, especially truck owners, tank farm owners and members of the National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), which was convened to find a lasting solution to the problems of traffic on Lagos roads, particularly in Apapa, Mile 2, Ijora and Kirikiri.
Speaking during the meeting, the representative of the Lagos State government and Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Transport, Mr. Taiwo Olufemi, lamented the parking of heavy duty trucks on bridges within the state.
He lamented the inflow and heavy presence of articulated vehicles into the Lagos Apapa Quays, explaining that the port was build for only 30 million metric tons of cargo but now carries 80 million metric tons.
He said there was need to clean up Apapa no matter whose ox is gored.
Earlier, the Flag Officer Commanding Western Naval Command, Rear Admiral Slyvanus Abbah who was chairman of the meeting lamented the influx of tankers and trailers, explaining that terrorists could take advantage of the chaos to attack Lagos.
Apart from the environmental hazards caused by the trucks who park indiscriminately on bridges, he explained that in a situation of national emergency, the reaction time for the military could be hampered.
For instance, he said that to move troops from Navy town in Kirikiri to Apapa, which ordinarily should take 25 minutes may take up to two hours due to the gridlock caused by trucks who spend days waiting for their turn to load fuel.

Customs intercepts poisonous vegetable oil in petrol tanker
The Nigeria Customs Service in Sokoto has intercepted another petrol tanker conveying 446 jerrycans of vegetable oil. The seizure is coming barely a week after the interception of a truck loaded with 460 bags of foreign rice with a duty value of N7.8 million.
Briefing reporters in Sokoto yesterday, the area comptroller in charge of Sokoto, Kebbi and Zamfara states, Mr. Nasir Ahmed, confirmed that the vegetable oil, with a duty value of N5.7 million, was concealed in a petrol tanker.
He disclosed that the jerrycans of vegetable oil were intercepted along Sokoto/Gusau road by the command’s surveillance team.
His words: “This is very new to me, that jerry cans of vegetable oil are loaded into a tanker that is supposed to be carrying petrol. I am sure they are not only running away from Customs, but also from NAFDAC because you can see there are no labels nor NAFDAC certification.
“Though we believe it is vegetable oil, it would still be subjected to NAFDAC test, to determine what is actually inside.”
Ahmed also disclosed that the truck driver and his escort, who were arrested in connection with the contraband, were assisting the command in its investigations.

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Senator Ben Uwajimogu, represents Imo North at the National Assembly on the platform of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
He has advised the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party to heed President Muhammadu Buhari’s recent warning that they should not allow imposition of candidates.
Governor Rochas Okorocha has stated at different fora that he has replaced you with one Prof. Obiageli as senator that will represent Imo North, come 2019. Are you in any way disturbed?
I’m also surprised just like many over the statement credited to Governor Rochas Okorocha. I read about it in your paper. If not that I did, I wouldn’t have believed it even though the governor had made the statement on several occasions. Prof Obiageli who is running as a proxy of Okorocha is going round Okigwe zone claiming to be the next Senator that will represent them in the 9th Senate. My reaction is that it is a tragedy because the governor appears not to realise that in a democracy he doesn’t have the capacity to determine who will represent Imo North at the National Assembly in 2019. The power resides with the people of Okigwe to decide who will represent them. When the time comes Okigwe people will choose those that will represent them in different capacities. No doubt, they will speak with their votes. Like I have said at different fora, the governor is distracting his administration by promising so many people positions he cannot guarantee. Okorocha should realise that power belongs to God. God is the one that will decide who gets into any position. So, my advice to OKorocha is not to play God because the way God made him governor so He will enthrone others into positions as it pleases Him. Therefore, any attempt by anybody no matter how highly placed to cow the people will be resisted.
Before now, you have never disagreed with Okorocha publicly, when did you fall out with the governor?
I have worked with Okorocha since 2011 when I was Speaker of Imo State House of Assembly. We had very harmonious working relationship and those days we discussed most policies before they were implemented. I was carried along and my suggestions and opinion were considered and implemented and the people were better for it. But since the second coming of Okorocha, the policies and programmes of the governor are not people oriented and I have continued to oppose such policies and programmes. They include the demolition of Eke Ukwu Market and people’s properties without any commiserate compensation. The fact that a lot of interest groups within the APC were leaving the party in droves because the party in the state was not properly managed shows that Okorocha is running the state as a private enterprise. I can reliably inform you that for over three years of APC, we have not held any meeting where leaders, stakeholders and the governor were invited. Okorocha should also know that APC has grown beyond where one man will decide what happens. Decisions are collectively taken for the good of all members. He should realise that Interest of major stakeholders must be given due consideration. The governor’s plan to install his son in-law as his successor did not go down well with not only me but most people in the state. And I made my stand known to the governor and his reaction is to plot how he will push me out of the senate. As the senator representing Imo North, I intend to put my name forward when it is time to run for election as candidate of APC for Okigwe Senatorial District in 2019 and I believe by God’s grace I will be re-elected by my people.
You were accused of being used by Okorocha to impeach his former deputy, Jude Agbaso, have you any regret over your involvement in the impeachment saga as Speaker?
I do not have any regret whatsoever because the impeachment of the then deputy governor, Jude Agbaso went through due process. The deputy governor was invited and interviewed. The key issue were: did the state lose money under the deputy governor’s watch? Certain amount was paid to a contractor and the deputy governor was the commissioner for Finance at the time and the contractor had abandoned the site for almost 10months and he never returned to site. So, when we contacted the contractor, he said he gave the money to the deputy governor. And the deputy governor was invited and he denied having any contact with the contractor, but when the contractor was brought before the deputy governor and the contractor explained where and how they met, claiming the deputy governor forwarded an account number to him and we asked the deputy governor to provide his call log of MTN and he did not do that. So, it was negligence on the part of the deputy governor either by commission or omission. He did not discharge the duties of the state government to the best of his ability and so he was indicted for not doing that. And when you are indicted as a deputy governor the only option is impeachment and that was exactly what we did. He went to court to challenge his impeachment up to the Supreme Court and he lost. Therefore, I don’t have any regret for my involvement in the impeachment. My only regret is that as my friend it affected our friendship. The impeachment was avoidable, if Agbaso had yielded to the political solution. But he did not take advantage of it and so the process of impeachment had to go on and I was the principal officer who presided over the process and having seen the facts presented by members, I had no option but to do the needful.
When you said the state APC has not held meeting for three years, are you not worried that Okorocha may deny you the party ticket in 2019 since the governor is the leader of APC in Imo?
I was one of the founding members of APC in Imo State. As a matter of fact, APC Okigwe zone was formed in my sitting room where we appointed facilitators who went and established the party in their local government areas and wards. APC is stronger in Okigwe zone than in any other zone in the state. It is also in the same Imo North that we have the only APC Senator and one member of House of Representatives of APC from Imo. And indeed, the six members in the state House of assembly are from Okigwe. So, I’m a major stakeholder in APC and Okorocha has right to support whoever he wants but he does not possess the right to impose candidate on the people. If he presents a candidate and APC stakeholders and the delegates find out that the candidate can win election for the party, so be it. But what stakeholders are saying is that it is immoral for the governor to present his so in-law who is from the same political zone, Orlu, to succeed him as governor of Imo State. The young man in question need more experience in other areas of life to be able to govern a state like Imo. Yes, a 42 years old man can be governor especially now that there is clamour for young people to take over leadership of the country but I don’t think Uche Nwosu has the experience to run Imo State. I believe APC will lose Imo if Okorocha is allowed to field his in-law as candidate of the party in the governorship race in 2019.
To many, you are seen as being ungrateful to Okorocha having helped you to defeat Chief Atan Achonu to become Senator?
Of course, Okorocha was part of my victory, but you cannot say I’m ungrateful. On December 31, 2016 I led Okigwe leaders including Sen. Ararume to thank Okorocha for his support and as the leader of APC in the state. So, I owe the governor appreciation. He will continue to be the leader of APC in Imo till 2019 when he leaves office and when he leaves office he will be one of our major stakeholders. The fact is that we run a party politics and it is one for all, all for one. In 2015 we had an election and all of us who won and those who lost worked to deliver the governor both at the first and second ballot. Also, we all worked to deliver every other candidate and that was exactly what happened in my own case. So, when you make it sound like it was a different case, I begin to wonder. However, even members of the National Working Committee of APC came from Abuja to assist in campaign and during the election proper. Ararume was at the forefront of my election too just as he assisted Okorocha to be re-elected. So, this is what party politics is all about. I’m still grateful to those who played major roles to ensure I emerged victorious. However, there are things I will not accept no matter how grateful I’ am, things that go below my moral acceptance. When things I will not accept happen, I must speak against it.
Before we disagreed openly, I told the governor that I won’t support anti -people policies of his administration. For instance, when I was Speaker and Eke Ukwu Market demolition issue came up, I dissuaded OKorocha several times from demolishing the market. And before the recent demolition, other leaders and I sort audience with the governor to discuss and warn him of the consequence of the demolition without provision of an alternative place for the traders but he never gave us audience. Imagine if you demolish people’s stores without providing them alternatives, how can the people feed themselves and their families? It is a pity that Governor Okorocha having agreed with the leaders of the market that he will give them time, only went days later to pull down the market during Christmas festival even with their wares inside their shops.

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
President Muhammadu Buhari, Wednesday evening, at the new Banquet Hall,at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, received the FIFA World Cup Trophy .
He was handed the trophy by Christian Karembeu, a retired French International footballer, a representative of FIFA.
The President and members of the Federal Executive Council (FEC), took a break from the meeting which started at 11am, to attend to receive the FIFA delegation led by President, Coca Cola West Africa, Peter Njonjo.
He also received CHAN Super Eagles who got silver medal at the competition in Morocco in January.
Also received by the Nigeria’s President Bobsleigh are Winter Olympics Team. Buhari, noted that football has a cult following in Nigeria which cuts across religion and ethnicities.
He assured that the Super Eagles will get the necessary support ahead of the completion which starts in June, in Russia. The President noted that football is a huge platform for empowering youths and commended Coca Cola for investing in football.
He urged other organizations to emulate Coca Cola in supporting football and other sports.
Buhari commended the CHAN Super Eagles and Nigeria’s Bobsleigh Winter Olympic Team, for making the nation proud.
The Minister of Sports, Solomon Dalung, said Nigeria was hosting the Cup because it was one of the countries that have qualified to participate in the competition.  He expressed optimism that the Cup will return to the country in July, as the Super Eagles will win it.  Dalung said, “We have worked very hard for it and we will continue to make Nigeria proud.”
He said the Super Eagles who took part in the CHAN competition in Morocco, advanced to the finals for the first time.
He also said Nigeria’s Bobsleigh Winter Olympic Team, hoisted Nigeria’s flag for the first time in the competition, even though they are based in the United States.
Dalung said, “Sports under your administration is moving. It’s been harvest of medals under your leadership. Sports is about funding and you have given support.” Njonjo said the tour will extend to 91 cities in 51 countries, courtesy of Coca Cola.

According to him, Nigeria will enjoy “the special consideration of hosting the Trophy for four whole days and in two cities – Lagos and Abuja.

This is, no doubt, a recognition of the country’s status as not just a nation of passionate football lovers, but historically high ranking football nation and home to some of the world’s famous and favourite football players.”

He said Nigerians from all works to see the authentic, one-of-a-kind FIFA World Cup Trophy and take a photo beside it.

“The event will certainly put Nigeria on the global spotlight. It will also heighten the patriotic fervor in millions of the Super Eagles’ fans in this national quest to bring home the FIFA World Cup Trophy this year.”

FIFA representative, Karembeu, in his remarks said, Nigeria has beautiful youth and a future to build sports.

He said as a a World Cup winner and he will like to see the Super Eagles believe in themselves and go far in the competition and bring happiness and joy to the Nigerian people.

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Romanus Ugwu, Abuja Former French international footballer, Christian Karembeu, has expressed confidence 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Joe Apu Nigeria manager, Gernot Rohr has recalled defender Kenneth Omeruo in his list of 28-man squad 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Vincent Torgah made a brilliant opening 69 on the first day of Eko Challenge Cup at the Lakowe Lakes 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Serena Williams has confirmed she will make her highly anticipated return to professional tennis on Thursday 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Zika Bobby Five finalists have emerged in the Lagos Maltavator Challenge, a talent-hunt initiative organised 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Admits exit from recession The International Monetary Fund (IMF), Wednesday, welcomed Nigeria's 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja The Federal Executive Council (FEC), presided over by President Muhammadu 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has extended its free e-dividend registration deadline to 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
United States based firm, Krispy Kreme Doughnut Corporation yesterday formally commencedbusiness operation 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Says 217 years needed to close workplace gender gap Uche Usim, Abuja The Central Bank of Nigeria 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Magnus Eze and Okwe Obi, Abuja As farmers gear up for the new farming season, the Federal Government 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
The Chairman of Troyka Group, Mr. Biodun Shobanjo, has been awarded the Extraordinary Business Achievement 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Uche Usim, Abuja The Indonesian government is seeking the cooperation of Federal Government to increase 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Heritage Bank Plc has taken its campaign for concerted efforts for the growth of agribusiness and commerce 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
1,321 killed, 1,181 injured in recent attacks Fred Itua The Senate ad hoc Committee on Security Infrastructure 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Saraki, Al-Makura, Ndoma-Egba, others eulogise ex-Nasarawa gov Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja, Linus Oota, 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Justice Yusuf Halilu of the FCT High Court, Jabi, has granted bail to Maryam Sanda, who allegedly killed 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Godwin Tsa, Abuja After eight years of gruesome trial, a Federal High Court in Abuja has sentenced Charles 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Job Osazuwa Against the backdrop of Senate's concurrence on amendment of the Nigerian Financial Intelligence 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Mohammed Munirat Nasir, Gusaud Notorious and dreaded armed bandit in Zamfara state, Tsoho Buhari, also 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Suggests certain people might be profiting from the Boko Haram insurgency Calls on international community 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Godwin Tsa, Abuja After eight years of trial, a Federal High Court in Abuja on Wednesday sentenced Charles 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Did you know that your digestive tract contains more than 400 different species of 'friendly' bacteria 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Dear Dr, I participated in the 42 kilometer Access Bank sponsored Lagos Marathon last week, and within 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
I have decided to write for The Sun newspaper every Thursday because I do not accept anymore the surface 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Tears usually depict painful or sorrowful situations a person is involved or is passing through. The 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Attahiru Jega, the man who conducted the 2015 general election in which an incumbent President was ousted, 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
The first time Mrs. Maria Ude Nwachi appeared in the national press was when she received her official 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
I met OUK some years ago and we had a pertinent discussion on both national international issues. Our 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Events and activities leading to the 42nd annual general meeting (AGM) of National Association of Nigeria 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
If the question is asked, who are the most powerful professionals' The answer simply would be, physicians. 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Jerome-Mario Utomi Looking at the ripple reactions that greeted the hate speech bill currently before 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
ADEZE OJUKWU The gravity of kidney disease and its colossal financial demands, can be described as a 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Sanni Onogu The Senate Roundtable on Migration and Human Trafficking held in Benin City, the Edo State 

Thu, 08 Mar 2018
Transparency International recently delivered its annual verdict on the corruption status of Nigeria, 
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