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Obi Is Africa’s New Face Of Democracy



By Amanze Obi

The electoral authorities in Sierra Leone have just commented on Nigeria’s 2023 presidential election. The focus was on Mr Peter Obi, who flew the flag of the Labour Party in that election.
Just a few days ago, the chairman of the country’s Political Parties Regulations Commission (PPRC), Abdulai Bangura, urged politicians participating in the country’s ongoing elections to borrow a leaf from Mr Peter Obi of Nigeria. He told his countrymen and women that Obi held so much promise in the February 25 presidential election in Nigeria. He pointed out that Obi was a frontrunner who was tipped to win the election. However, when the results were announced by Nigeria’s electoral commission, the vote tally did not favour Obi. Bangura noted with satisfaction that Obi did not mobilize his teeming supporters to take to violence despite the fact that the election was believed to have been massively rigged. Instead, the Labour Party candidate restrained himself and chose the legal option to reclaim his mandate. Bangura described Obi’s conduct as worthy of emulation and urged the people of Sierra Leone to, like Nigeria’s Peter Obi, approach leadership with restraint and selflessness. The PPRC Chief is satisfied that Obi has, through his peaceful conduct, saved his country from bloodshed.
From Bangura’s commentary, it has become a well known fact that the preparations for, as well as the conduct and outcome of the February 25 presidential election in Nigeria have become a reference point not just in Nigeria but indeed the whole of Africa and beyond. Just as Nigerians were excited and expectant about the election, so was the watching world. Even after the election had, presumably, been won and lost, matters arising from it remain a subject of excitable discourse in Africa and the globe.
But the 2023 presidential election in Nigeria did not just happen. It became a turning point in democratic discourse in Nigeria and Africa owing principally to the participation of one man in that election. That man is Mr Peter Obi.
Obi happened upon the Nigerian polity like a storm. He came with a certain thunderbolt,  attendant with suddenness and surprise. He went into the election with a refreshing outlook both in messaging and disposition. This caught instantly like wild fire. Nigerians had never seen such novelty and originality in their politics. That was why the greater majority of the people embraced him without reservations.
By restraining himself from going loose with his army of supporters after the election was compromised, Peter Obi has made himself a reference point. His exemplary conduct is worthy of emulation. This was what the Sierra Leonian party regulation Chief was talking about.
Unlike many before him who relied on violence and intimidation to win elections, Obi never preached violence. He did not deploy foul language in his campaigns. He remained civil and tame even in the face of provocations. Beyond all this, Obi did not rig elections and he did not ask anybody to rig for him. He played straight. That is why he is standing tall even in the face of daunting challenges.
Bangura has just told us the trending story about democracy in Africa. The story revolves around the name Peter Obi. Certainly, Bangura’s observation does not end in Sierra Leone. Other countries of the world where elections are still regarded as a do or die affair have so much to learn from the Peter Obi example. Indeed, Obi has become the new face of democracy in Africa.
For analysts, the Peter Obi disposition poses a huge challenge to our electoral courts. Going by the story emanating from Sierra Leone, Nigerians and the relevant institutions, especially the courts, are being watched. The watching world will like to see and know how the electoral infractions in Nigeria will be adjudicated upon. They will be interested in knowing whether the Justices will live above board. Will they deliver justice or politics? Time, certainly, will tell.



Group Calls For Protection Of Journalists In Bayelsa, Imo, Kogi States



The Media Rights Agenda (MRA) has urged for necessary measures to protect journalists and other media workers during this weekend’s off-cycle elections in Bayelsa, Imo, and Kogi States.

The group sent the request to the federal and state governments, as well as law enforcement and security agencies, stressing that the role of journalists in disseminating information about the electoral process is critical to ensuring free, fair, and transparent elections.

In a statement issued ahead of the elections in Lagos and signed by the Communications Officer, Media Rights Agenda, Idowu Adewale, MRA also urged journalists to be cautious and to use its existing hotline (08138755660) to report any threat or attack they may encounter during the process, as well as any obstacle.

Adewale said in the statement: “Given the pattern of heightened attacks on journalists and the media during previous elections, including the recent 2023 general elections, as well as the tense political climate in the three states in the lead-up to the elections, measures must be taken to ensure general security during the elections and provide adequate protection for journalists covering the elections.”

“Access to information allows citizens and other members of the public to have the information they need about political and electoral processes, facilitating effective public participation in elections,” he says.

“Journalists and the media play an important role in ensuring residents and other members of the public have access to information and may participate in the process.

“As part of efforts to preserve the integrity of the polls, it is also critical that the safety and well-being of these interlocutors be assured and safeguarded.”

Lamenting the increased number of attacks on journalists in the run-up to the off-cycle elections, as well as earlier this year in the run-up to the general elections, he emphasised that “a free and vibrant media is fundamental to a healthy democracy, and journalists must be able to carry out their duties without fear, coercion, or violence.” During this vital phase, MRA stands ready to assist them and assure their safety.”


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Police Nab Husband, As Mother Of ‘Mummy Be Calming Down’ Boy Takes Own Life



Men from the Edo State Police Command are said to have detained Mrs. Toluige Olokoobi’s husband after he allegedly murdered her.

Olokoobi was the mother of Oreofeoluwa Lawal-Babalola, the tiny boy whose video went viral in 2020 after he pleaded with his mother, “Mummy be calming down.”

Oreofeoluwa rose to prominence on social media after a video of him crying in an attempt to confidently appeal to his mother, who chastised him, went viral.

The film inspired Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, who used it to deliver an Eid-el-Kabir appeal to Muslims and Lagos people in general to remain calm during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Following that, the youngster and his family met with the governor, who praised his bravery and poise.

While little has been heard about the family in three years, heartbreaking news broke on social media on Tuesday that the boy’s mother had committed suicide.

According to an X user, Olokoobi committed suicide in Benin, the capital of Edo State, for unknown reasons.

The X user, who stated that he was present at the site on Monday afternoon, went on to say that she had refused to disclose her difficulties with anyone before committing herself.

“The woman in the viral Mummy Calm Down video has just committed suicide here in Benin,” he stated in an email.

“She refused to discuss her problems with anyone.” She abandoned three children for her husband, including the well-known Mummy Calm Down boy.”

Meanwhile, confirming Olokoobi’s death in a chat with BBC Pidgin, the spokesperson of the Edo State police command, Chidi Nwabuzor, said her husband has been arrested and detained for questioning.

Nwabuzor said the husband reported the matter to the police.

The police spokesperson quoted the husband to have said that “he came home from the market when he saw his wife hanging with rope on her neck”.

Nwabuzor said she was rushed to the hospital and then to the mortuary after she was confirmed dead. (Adapted from a Vanguard report).

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Anambra: CP Aderemi Adeoye Decorates Promoted Officers With New Ranks



The Anambra State Police Command Headquarters Conference Hall was a hive of activity Thursday as CP Aderemi Adeoye took turns decorating around 18 promoted officers of the command with their new titles.

The delight of some of the officers whose wives assisted the CP in decorating their husbands with their new ranks knew no bounds, as their husbands duly saluted their wives and the CP for their new positions and responsibilities.

Obi Innocent, one of the officers elevated to the rank of Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP), whose wife joined CP Aderemi Adeoye in adorning him with his new rank, said it was wonderful that the Inspector General of Police thought him worthy.

CSP Obi Innocent, the officer in charge of the Legal Department at Zone 13, Police Zonal Headquarters Ukpo, stated that his new rank was a call to service and that he would do his best to uphold the charge given to them by CP Aderemi Adeoye to respect and protect the citizenry’s fundamental rights in the discharge of their new assignments.

Charity Akharame, who was honoured with the rank of Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) and was the only female officer among the 18 promoted officers decorated with new ranks, said it was not an easy feat but she was grateful to be among those who were decorated with their new ranks.

DSP Charity Akharame, the officer in charge of stores in the Anambra State Police Command, recalled how she began as a Police Constable and worked her way up to her current position as Deputy Superintendent of Police.

She stated that as a very disciplined police officer, she would follow the Police Commissioner’s directions regarding respect for all and sundry in the fulfillment of her constitutional obligations.

Jane-Frances Obi, one of the spouses of the officers elevated to the level of CSP, stated that being the wife of a police officer was not an easy assignment. As a result, she recommended any lady who is married to a police officer to be patient and understanding because the job is quite demanding.

Jane-Frances Obi, whose husband is Innocent Obi, the officer in charge of the Legal Department at Zone 13 Ukpo, believes the promotion is a reward for years of being patient, understanding, and standing in for them when they are not present.

Meanwhile, Emenike Chinenyenwa, who was decorated with the rank of Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) and presented a vote of appreciation, expressed deep gratitude to the IGP and the Chairman of the Police Service Commission for considering them worthy of being adorned in their new ranks.

ACP Emenike, the officer in charge of Medicals, stated that the elevation comes with increased responsibility and that they will work harder in their new tasks.

CP Aderemi Adeoye praised the current promotion winners in his remarks, noting that two aspects make the police career very interesting and eventful. He stated that one is for promotion and the other is for positions.

CP Adeoye, on the other hand, urged the newly honored officers to develop more empathy, compassion, care, and dedication in the performance of their jobs.

The police chief insisted that newly promoted officers must first recognise that they share the same humanity as others, and as a result, they must treat all people with dignity and protect their fundamental human rights at all times.

CP Aderemi Adeoye stressed that without the enormous roles of spouses, they wouldn’t have been successful in their careers. He therefore congratulated all the promoted and prayed that God gives them good health to enjoy the new ranks and the energy to discharge the responsibilities of their new offices.

  • Source: Independent


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