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2015: Igbo group endorse Jonathan for re-election
BY GABRIEL EWEPU
ABUJA- AS 2015 general elections draw closer, an Igbo social group, Supreme Igbo Security Council, SISC, under the auspices of Ohaneze Ndigbo, Wednesday, had joined others to endorse President Goodluck Jonathan for re-election in 2015 general elections and that after Jonathan?s second term, it would be turn of an Igbo man to rule Nigeria as president.
The endorsement by SISC was made at a world press conference held in Abuja, where the President, SISC, Bobby Ukadike, in an address said Mr. President as every other Nigerian elected has the constitutional right to seek re-election, therefore should be allowed to go for a second term in office.
Ukadike stated that those who ruled before Mr. President from the North and West did two terms in office, and that they should understand it was not yet their turns to contest for the position of President in the 2015 general election.
Okadike:?We in Supreme Igbo Security Council, SISC, want to tell Nigerians that since the independence of this country in October 1960, which is 53 years ago, the North had ruled Nigeria for 40 years, while the South West ruled Nigeria for almost 12 years.
?Therefore it is not the turn of the North to rule Nigeria now, and it is not the turn of the South West also to rule Nigeria. President Goodluck Jonathan should be allowed to do his second term. Moreover he is still giving the dividends of democracy and promising more to Nigerians despite the security challenges and insurgency in the North.?
Meanwhile, Okadike maintained that after Mr. President?s second term in office in 2019, it would be the turn of an Igbo man to become the next President of the country. He alleged that the Igbos had not been treated fairly in national issues and for a long time had not been allowed to produce a President despite their enormous contributions to national development.
?It is the turn of Ndigbo to produce the next President of Nigeria in 2020 immediately after President Jonathan?s second term in office. And that an Igbo man succeeds President Jonathan is a must.
?That if the Igbos are not giving their fair turn to produce the President of Nigeria immediately after President Jonathan?s second term in office, then we will come to an inevitable conclusion that the Igbos are not wanted in Nigeria and then the unavoidable consequences will be everyone to his tent, because we have endured enough. This is our final resolution and it is not negotiable,? says Okadike.
On the current security challenges in the North East, the organisation also called on the Boko Haram sect to lay down their arms and dialogue with the federal government and end the blood-bath in the region.
JOHANNESBURG (AFP) ? Nigeria have given first call-ups to Belgium-based Imoh Ezekiel and Michael Uchebo as the search for 2014 World Cup sharpshooters continues Wednesday with a warm-up against Mexico.
Ezekiel plays for Standard Liege and Uchebo for Cercle Bruges and both could get a chance in the American city of Atlanta to show their worth.
Coach Stephen Keshi is concerned about his goal-shy attack ahead of the World Cup in Brazil, where the Super Eagles? first-round rivals are Argentina, Bosnia Herzegovina and Iran.
Other strikers chosen for the Mexico fixture include Shola Ameobi of Newcastle United and Emmanuel Emenike of Fenerbahce.
Midfielder Ramon Azeez from Spanish side Almeria is another newcomer as former national team captain Keshi casts his net wide in pursuit of fresh talent.
However, an injury has thwarted the comeback of veteran defender Joseph Yobo, who last played for his country 13 months ago when they won the Nations Cup in South Africa.
Fellow World Cup qualifiers Algeria, Cameroon, Ghana and Ivory Coast also play in mid-week as the on-field countdown to the 32-nation world football spectacular kicks off.
Ghana welcome first-choice central defenders John Boye and Jonathan Mensah back from injuries that kept them out of an African play-off triumph over Egypt last year.
But goalkeeper Fatau Dauda has been omitted for a Podgorica date with Montenegro as coach Kwesi Appiah continues to consider only footballers playing regularly at club level.
Dauda has been unable to displace South Africa second-choice Senzo Meyiwa this season at Soweto outfit Orlando Pirates.
Ivory Coast hope reigning African Footballer of the Year Yaya Toure can take outstanding club form into a Brussels friendly against Belgium.
Toure scored an outstanding goal last weekend when Manchester City defeated Sunderland in the English League Cup final, curling the ball into the roof of the net from outside the box.
Compatriot Salomon Kalou is also on fire, scoring a hat-trick for French outfit Lille, while the English Premier League struggles of Swansea have not prevented Wilfried Bony netting regularly.
Belgium should test the ?Elephants? with Vincent Kompany and Eden Hazard two of the England-based stars in a team many pundits believe can go far in Brazil.
Algeria are in the same group as the Belgian Red Devils and they stay in Africa this week, hosting 2010 World Cup qualifiers Slovenia in Blida.
Teenage Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Nabil Bentaleb, who represented France at age-limit level, has opted to play senior football for the homeland of his parents.
He has been included in the squad for Slovenia, but an injury rules out wide Valencia midfielder Sofiane Feghouli, one of the Desert Foxes? main attacking threats.
Cameroon chose two Barcelona ?babes? ? defender Macky Franck Bagnack and striker Jean Marie Dongou ? for a Leiria warm-up against Portugal.
The youngsters are reserves at the Spanish and European giants and were named in a squad lacking midfielder Stephane Mbia and striker Achille Webo owing to injuries.
Long-time assistant Shawky Gharib debuts as Egypt coach against Bosnia in Austria and has brought back 41-year-old goalkeeper Essam al-Hadary.
Senegal have recalled out-of-favour Chelsea striker Demba Ba for a Paris friendly with Mali, whose new coach Henryk Kasperczak gives first call-ups to midfielders Birama Toure and Bakary Sako.
Delvin Ndinga, a key midfield cog when Greek side Olympiakos upset Manchester United 2-0 in the Champions League first leg match last week, is part of the Congo Brazzaville squad for a Tunis friendly with Libya.
AFP- Five UN peacekeeping troops were wounded Monday when two people on a motorcycle threw a grenade at their patrol in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo, the UN force said Tuesday.
The UN mission for the stabilisation of the country (MONUSCO) said in a statement the attack occurred in the area of Beni in North Kivu province. It did not say how seriously the troops were hurt.
?This unacceptable attack? does not in any way reduce our support for FARDC (DRC Armed Forces) in the fight against armed groups,? MONUSCO chief Martin Kobler said in the statement.
?Our brief is to neutralise all the illegal armed groups in the east of the DRC, and we are determined to carry it out,? he added.
Beni is more than 300 kilometres north of Goma, the capital of North Kivu, a restive resource-rich province that borders Rwanda and Uganda.
On January 16 the FARDC regular army launched an offensive against the Ugandan Muslim rebel group ADF-Nalu and announced in mid-February that it had inflicted severe losses on the rebels.
The UN provides them with logistical and tactical support to the FARDC, but on Saturday, for the first time since the start of the operation, two MONSUCO attack helicopters fired on a large ADF-Nalu base.
ADF-Nalu stands for Allied Democratic Forces-National Army for the Liberation of Uganda. It is one of the oldest but lesser known rebellions based in North-Kivu and is considered the only Islamist organisation in the region.
?Akinyemi is Vice chairman
By Okey Ndiribe, Abuja
President Goodluck Jonathan has appointed former Chief Justice of the federation, Hon. Justice Idris Kutigi as chairman of the National Conference
Chief Anyim Pius Anyim, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, in a statement, in Abuja, Monday, also announced former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Prof. Boaji Akinyemi as Vice Chairman.
Dr. Valerie Azinge is to serve as secretary of the conference and therefore in charge of the secretariat
BY OKEY NDIRIBE
The activities of terrorists in the North-Eastern part of the country and the Federal Government?s military offensive against the situation has resulted in over 10,000 women becoming widows in the region.
This was disclosed yesterday in Abuja by Barrister Rotimi Ogunwuyi, National Coordinator of Governance Watch Initiative during a press conference he addressed on the activities of Boko Haram.
Ogunwuyi further lamented that the terrorist group had so far destroyed 209 schools in Yobe State and 800 classrooms in Borno adding that many markets had been sacked thereby disrupting commercial activities and causing scarcity of goods leading to very high inflation.
He further stated that since 2011, estimates of casualties resulting from the insurgency stands at over 3600 adding that the situation appears not to have changed despite the military offensive occasioned by the state of emergency.