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Wike Backs Court Ruling On PDP Convention

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…As Secondus Heads To Supreme Court

Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has backed the ruling of the Court of Appeal on the Peoples Democratic Party convention scheduled to begin on Saturday.

The Court had on Friday granted the PDP the right to hold the convention in a suit brought by suspended chairman, Uche Secondus.

Delivering the ruling on behalf of two other justices, Justice Gabriel Kolawole held that the attempt by the applicant, Uche Secondus, to suspend the planned convention is an act of “self-induced urgency” to disrupt an ongoing lawful process of the party.

“It is a victory for every member of PDP,” Wike told reporters. “It is a sign that PDP is prepared for 2023.”

The Governor said Mr Secondus had already handed over his chairmanship to PDP National Deputy Chairman (South), Yemi Akinwonmi, and had no right to seek the postponement of the convention.

“We will not allow any individual or groups to derail the rescue mission of the PDP,” he said. “The title of our convention is ‘Join us to rescue Nigeria’.

“Nigeria is in problem and we cannot do it alone. We require everybody to work with us for collectively and see how this country can be rescued.

“So, if there is anybody or group who are being used to derail us, PDP will not take it lightly. We are serious about it and nothing will stop us from rescuing this country.

“PDP should be thanking God Almighty. We should be jubilating and praising God for bringing unity to this country.”

He also noted that the Court of Appeal judgement granted PDP an “unrestrained” right to hold the convention, making any other court judgement obtained to halt the process irrelevant.

Meanwhile, following his failure to stop the national convention of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) at the Appeal Court in Port Harcourt, the suspended National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Prince Uche Secondus, has announced his move to appeal the ruling.

Secondus, who said that he has just been briefed of the ruling of the Court of Appeal, dismissing his motion to halt the National Convention of the party, added that he respect the position of the court even though he disagreed totally with it.

Secondus, in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media, Ike Abonyi said, “even as the substantive case is still pending at the Court of Appeal I have instructed my lawyers to study the ruling with a view to appealing it immediately as no abuse of the constitution of our dear party should be allowed to stand.

“The issue is not about Prince Uche Secondus but about the sanctity of our party constitution and core democratic principles of justice and rule of law not only in PDP but in our democracy. No impunity must be condoned.

“I will therefore wish to emphasis the fact that I did not take the party to court and would not have done that.

“As a foundation member of this party who has served at various levels, State Chairman, Chairman of state Chairmen, National Organizing Secretary, Deputy National Chairman, Acting National Chairman and now National Chairman, am very much abreast with the workings of the party. I have been a witness to how much harm litigations have done to our party in the past and as a result I have been a strong advocate against settling issues in courts.

“This was why I resisted and rejected entreaties of those who wanted me to go to court to halt these forces when it was obvious that they were determined to disrupt my leadership and truncate my tenure in office with the sole objective of hijacking the party for their selfish ulterior motives.

“To allow this travesty to stand is to reduce our beloved party to a level where anybody can wake up over night and remove officers against the proscribed constitutional process and the National Chairman for that matter. And purporting to use the judiciary through an experte order to legitimize same.

“As a major practitioner in our democracy, I am duty bound to protect and defend the sanctity of the provisions of our constitution of which am the custodian.

“I wish to therefore at this juncture thank and appreciate leaders and other stakeholders of our party who have called in to express their concerns on this matter and appeal for the understanding of all.

“If those who orchestrated and fostered this avoidable crisis had listened to wise counsel of party leaders and elders who advised the withdrawal of cases, this situation would have been avoidable. I wish the party well as always.”

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Israel Adesanya Beats Jared Cannonier To Retain UFC Middleweight Title

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Israel Adesanya defeated Jarred Cannonier via unanimous decision (49-46, 49-46, 50-45) to retain the UFC middleweight championship.

Adesanya fought against middleweight contender Jared Cannonier at UFC 276 at the T-mobile Arena, Las Vegas Sunday morning.

Since making his debut in 2018, ‘The Last Stylebender’ has looked better each time he’s stepped into the Octagon and is still undefeated in the middleweight. He first captured the interim title in the Fight of The Year winner against Kelvin Gastelum in 2019.

‘Izzy’ then defeated Robert Whittaker and unified the titles that same year.

He has successfully defended his title four times since then. On an otherwise perfect record for Adesanya (22-1), his only loss was during his unsuccessful step up to light heavyweight, losing to then-champion Jan Blachowicz.

On Sunday, the Nigerian-born New Zealander successfully defended his middleweight title for the fifth time.

While Adesanya defeated Robert Whittaker in February for the second time to retain his middleweight strap, Cannonier knocked out Derek Brunson in the second round in February to become the weight’s No.1contender.

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Ekiti Election: INEC Calls For Speedy Prosecution Of Arrested ‘Vote-Buyers’

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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Saturday called for the quick prosecution of all those arrested for vote-buying during the Ekiti State governorship election.

INEC Chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu, made the call during a meeting with members of the Inter-Agency Committee on Election Security in Abuja.

He said he was satisfied with the conduct of security agencies during the election, and that the speedy prosecution of culprits of vote-buying will serve as a deterrent for others.

“Vote busying remains a major area of concern. We appreciate the role played by anti-corruption and security agencies,” he said.

“We are working with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to ensure the prosecution of persons arrested in the Ekiti governorship election.”

The INEC Chairman also highlighted the commission’s activities lined up for the forthcoming Osun State scheduled for July 16.

According to him, INEC is committed to the conduct of pre-election activities to perfect the Osun polls.

“The Commission is deploying a readiness assessment team to Osun State next week to assess our preparations. We will visit some of our local government offices in the state, hold meetings with our staff, we will also observe the mock accreditation of voters in some polling units across the three senatorial districts in the state,” the INEC Chairman added.

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Let Me Go, I Hate Playing In Europa League, Ronaldo Tells Man United

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Cristiano Ronaldo has asked Manchester United to let him leave should they receive a satisfactory offer this summer, the UK Times reports.

The 37-year-old’s decision is driven by his desire to play in the Champions League for the remainder of his career.

Ronaldo has featured in Europe’s top tier club competition for the last 19 consecutive seasons since he left Sporting Lisbon in 2003.

The Portugal captain has made 183 appearances in the Champions League, notching 140 goals and providing 42 assists.

Ronaldo has never played in the Europa League, in which the Red Devils will feature this season, after they could only finish sixth in the Premier League.

According to Ronaldo, he has “three or four years” left at the highest level.

The player has been linked with Chelsea and Bayern Munich in recent weeks.

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