Tinubu Seeks Channels TV Sanctioning
The President-elect, Bola Ahmed Tinubu has petitioned the National Broadcasting Commission, NBC, to sanction Channels Television for breaching the Nigerian Broadcasting Code during an interview with the Vice-Presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Datti Baba Ahmed.
The petition was signed by the All Progressives Congress, presidential campaign council Director of Media and Publicity, Bayo Onanuga, and dated March 30 2023.
Tinubu in the petition said “In line with Section 14.0.1 of the Nigerian Broadcasting Code 6th edition stating the duty of the commission to accept complaints from aggrieved persons, bodies or members of the public and investigate as well as apply sanctions where necessary, the APC PCC hereby petitions the commission on breaches by CHANNELS TV on its programme ‘Politics Today’ last week.”
The president-elect accused the Labour Party Vice presidential candidate of making several comments that attacked the integrity of the 25th February 2023 presidential elections.
Baba-Ahmed n the interview had faulted the emergence of the former Lagos governor as the president-elect and requested the Chief Justice of Nigeria and President, Major Gen Muhamadu Buhari(retd) not to swear him in.
Tinubu also noted in the petition that the host of the show should have cautioned the Baba-Ahmed for making such careless comments and for failing to do so, the station should be sanctioned.
The petition partly reads, “The guest on the programme in question, Datti Baba-Ahmed, said President Muhammadu Buhari should not swear in the President-elect because he did not score 25% of the vote in the FCT, being one of the prerequisites for being declared the winner. This is a subversive comment since the matter is among the issues submitted in their petition before the tribunal for adjudication. Therefore, until the court rules otherwise, the status quo is the INEC position as declared in the final results.
“The guest, Datti Baba Ahmed’s comments about LP winning the presidential vote undermine constituted authority given to INEC in the 1999 Constitution as the body vested with the powers to conduct and announce national general elections results in Nigeria. Any figures aside, this will have to be certified by a tribunal as the authentic one.
“Therefore, Mr Datti’s statements that the INEC certificate of return issued to Tinubu is a “dud cheque” and is null and void is not only divisive and subversive but also inciting and inflammatory.”
The petition cited the NBC code that in Section 3.8.1(b) stated that ‘A Broadcaster shall ensure that no programme contains anything which amounts to subversion of constituted authority or compromises the unity or corporate existence of the nation as a Sovereign state’.
It was noted in the petition that the comment by Mr Datti later on the same programme that if ‘President Buhari should hand over to the President-elect by 29th May, that would be the end of democracy’ is another case of unguarded statement and breach of Section 5.3.3(b), which states that – ‘A Broadcaster shall avoid divisive and inflammatory matters in its provocative form in using political material’.
“Furthermore, Section 188.8.131.52 said that no Broadcaster shall encourage or incite crime, lead to public hate, disorder or repugnant to public feelings’ materials that cause disaffection.
“We, therefore, urge NBC to invoke the necessary sanctions on Channels Television for the breaches enumerated above.”
Dino Melaye Wins PDP Guber Ticket
Dino Melaye has been selected as the Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) candidate for the Kogi State governorship election.
The former senator who served as Kogi West’s representative in the National Assembly will contest the Kogi Gubernatorial, which is set for November 11, 2023.
Dino received 313 votes, defeating Jabiru Usman, who received 127 votes and was his closest challenger.
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At the conclusion of the indirect primary conducted in Lokoja, the capital of Kogi State, on Sunday, Ahmed Makarfi, the chairman of the PDP primary Election Committee, declared the outcomes.
Yomi Awoniyi, a former deputy governor, received 77 votes, and Musa Wada, the PDP’s candidate for governor in 2019, received 56 votes.
Dino will run in the November 11, 2023 election with Usman Ododo, a former Kogi State Auditor General of Local Government and candidate for the All Progressive Congress (APC) in the state. Yahaya Bello, the current governor, had backed Ododo a few days earlier.
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INEC Lists Electoral Offenders For Prosecution
The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, is set to prosecute over 200 persons arrested for various electoral offences during the just concluded general elections.
Already, the Nigeria Police Force has transferred over 50 case files of electoral offences to the electoral umpire.
Giving updates on the number of case files INEC offices across the country had received from the police and how many electoral offenders had been handed over to it, the Chief Press Secretary to the INEC Chairman, Rotimi Oyekanmi, told Saturday PUNCH in an exclusive interview on Friday, “The commission has received over 50 case files from the police authorities. There are over 200 accused persons set for prosecution.
“The commission has directed its Litigation and Prosecution Department to study the files and advise it on the prosecution. The department has since commenced action and as soon as it finishes, it will revert to the commission accordingly.”
On March 13, 2023, the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Baba, directed commissioners of police in charge of state commands to ensure investigation in all cases of violation of the Electoral Act during the February 25, 2023 presidential and National Assembly polls.
The IG directed them to swiftly conclude investigation and forward the case files to INEC for prosecution.
On March 14, the Chairman of INEC, Prof Mahmood Yakubu, said the commission was setting up a legal team to deal with cases of electoral offenders during the February 25 presidential and National Assembly polls.
On March 28, Baba directed that all electoral offences case files should be submitted to the Commissioner of Police in charge of the legal unit.
This, according to him, is to enable central collation and coordinated processing to the legal unit of INEC preparatory to the commencement of the prosecution process.
He gave an assurance that the NPF would collaborate with the INEC leadership in ensuring that all electoral offenders were expeditiously and transparently prosecuted not only in the interest of criminal justice, but in furtherance of the police’s vision of sanitising its electoral space.
Baba spoke at a meeting with strategic police managers of the NPF comprising deputy inspectors-general of police and members of the force management team, assistant inspectors-general of police, commissioners of police and other tactical commanders in Abuja.