* APC, PDP trade rigging allegations ahead of Saturday polls * INEC reacts as US says voter intimidation in Nigeria’s 2019 polls disappointing

* APC, PDP trade rigging allegations ahead of Saturday polls                    * INEC reacts as US says voter intimidation in Nigeria’s 2019 polls disappointing




APC, PDP trade rigging allegations ahead of Saturday polls

The All Progressives Congress and the People’s Democratic Party on Thursday traded accusations over plots to rig Saturday’s supplementary polls in some states. The PDP alleged that there were plots by the Federal Government to hijack the March 23 governorship supplementary elections scheduled to hold in six states. The states are Kano, Sokoto, Benue, Benue, Adamawa and Plateau. But Justice Abdulaaziz Waziri of the state High Court,  Yola, Adamawa State, on Thursday ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission not to conduct the elections in the state pending the determination of a counter-affidavit filed by INEC challenging the jurisdiction of the court to entertain a post-election matter.


INEC reacts as US says voter intimidation in Nigeria’s 2019 polls disappointing

The United States has said it is disappointed by the low voter turnout and reports of voter intimidation, vote -buying, interference by security forces and violence in some locations during Nigeria’s 2019 elections. But the Independent National Electoral Commission in its reaction to the US assessment of the elections said there could never be any perfect election anywhere in the world. However, the US admonished all stakeholders to work towards a free, fair, credible, transparent, and peaceful process, especially for those who would participate in Saturday’s supplementary elections in some states. The US Embassy in a statement in Abuja on Thursday commended Nigerians’ commitment to the democratic process, noting that it would continue to follow closely the ongoing polls.


INEC postpones supplementary governorship election in Adamawa

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has postponed the supplementary governorship election in Adamawa State it earlier scheduled for Saturday. The decision is in compliance with the order of a state high court. Instead, INEC said it will only hold supplementary elections in two State House of Assembly constituencies in the state on the same day. INEC had fixed Saturday for supplementary governorship elections in Adamawa and four other states, after declaring the elections on March in the states as inconclusive. The four other states are Plateau, Bauchi, Kano, Sokoto.


Rivers senator indicts Wike over militarised election

The All Progressives Congress member representing Rivers East Senatorial District, Andrew Uchendu, has accused the state Governor, Nyesom Wike, of militarising the recent elections in the state. He said the Nigerian Army was innocent contrary to Wike’s claims. Uchendu stated this in Abuja on Thursday during an interview with journalists on the crisis over the yet to be concluded  governorship and state house of assembly elections in the state. He alleged that Wike’s armed thugs in military uniforms carried out most of the killings and violent acts that took place in the state during the elections. He said, “Governor Wike on March 9, when the governorship election held, stormed Obio-Akpor Local Government Collation Centre with over 200 armed thugs.


INEC insists no certificates for Okorocha, others declared under duress

The Independent National Electoral Commission on Thursday insisted that it would not reward bad conduct by presenting certificates of return to candidates who its officials declared winners under duress. The commission, however said it could issue the certificates based on court judgement or decision of an election petitions tribunal. INEC’s National Commissioner and Chairman of its Information and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye, said this during a press conference held at the commission’s headquarters in Abuja. Okoye said apart from the Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha, there were other candidates from Niger, Benue and Akwa Ibom states who were also denied certificates of return for being declared winners under duress.


INEC holds supplementary election in Ibeju-Lekki state constituency

The Independent National Electoral Commission in Lagos State has concluded arrangements for the conduct of the supplementary election in nine polling units of Ibeju-Lekki State Constituency I on Saturday. The election became inconclusive as a result of over-voting in the nine polling units covering two registration areas of the constituency. The Resident Electoral Commissioner, Mr Sam Olumekun, in a statement on Thursday, said the commission had met with all relevant stakeholders in the area, including political parties and affected candidates. “Only voters with valid permanent voter cards within the constituency will be allowed into the polling units to vote,” he said.


KANO RERUN: Distribution of materials to begin Friday- INEC

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has given assurance that it is fully prepared to conduct the governorship rerun election across the 28 affected local government areas in the Kano State. The Resident Electoral Commissioner, Prof. Riskuwa Arab-Shehu, disclosed this while briefing newsmen on Thursday in Kano ahead of Saturday’s re-run election. The REC said INEC had received all the sensitive and non-sensitive materials for the re-run, pointing out that the distribution of the election materials would commence on Friday, March 22.


NNPC begins rehabilitation of Port Harcourt refinery

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation on Thursday announced the formal commencement of the first phase of the rehabilitation of the 210,000 barrels per day capacity Port Harcourt refinery. Port Harcourt refinery complex also houses the 60,000 barrels per day old refinery that was built in 1965 and the 150,000 barrels per day new refinery, inaugurated in 1989. The Group Managing Director, NNPC, Maikanti Baru, flagged-off the formal commencement of the rehabilitation work on the facility at the premises of the refinery in Port Harcourt on Thursday, 19 years after the last Turn Around Maintenance exercise of the nation’s premier refining plant.


Cultists kill corps members in Bayelsa

There was outrage in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, yesterday following the murder of some corps members by cultists. It was gathered that the cultists stormed the corps members’ residence on School Road in Swali and shot three of them. Two were confirmed dead at the Federal Medical Centre (FMC) in Yenagoa, and the third is receiving treatment at the hospital. The victims were Popoola Oluwatobi Olamide (30), a graduate of Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) and an indigene of Oyo State; George Onokpoma and Gbenga Dada. Olamide reportedly died on the spot. Onokpoma died at the FMC. Dada was said to be receiving treatment at the hospital. Their room was riddled with bullets and there were blood stains on the floor.


Star backs Eagles to shine

Star Lager Beer will from Friday (today) in Asaba, Delta State celebrate with passionate fans of the Super Eagles as they back the national team to shine in their last African Cup of Nation qualifier against Seychelles at the Stephen Keshi Stadium.

The beer brand is set to thrill passionate football fans during the Seychelles encounter and the friendly against Egypt on Tuesday at the famous Fan Park located outside the stadium. “As an official partner of the Nigeria Football Federation, Nigerian Breweries Plc is solidly behind the Super Eagles to continue to conquer higher grounds, and we as a corporate organisation will continue to build a fan base for the team as Nigeria stages a comeback to the African Cup of Nations tournament,” the Marketing Director, Nigerian Breweries Plc, Emmanuel Oriakhi, stated.


Ahmed Musa says Eagles will play for pride

Stand-in Captain of the Super Eagles, Ahmed Musa Thursday aptly summed up Friday’s dead-rubber 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier between Nigeria and Pirates of Seychelles as ‘Battle of Pride.’ “Yes, we have qualified already (for AFCON 2019), but there is something called pride. And also, we need to be in the mood for the match against Egypt, and again take this as part of the preparation for the Cup of Nations. “The Cup of Nations is less than three months away so our preparation has already started. The bigger picture is the thing,” observed the Al Nassr of Saudi Arabia forward shortly after Eagles last training session for today’s clash with Seychelles at the Stephen Keshi Stadium in Asaba.


Ronaldo fined for mimicking Simeone celebration

Cristiano Ronaldo was fined 20,000 euros ($22,738) by UEFA on Thursday for mimicking Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone’s crotch-grabbing celebration in Juventus’ Champions League last-16 win last week. The 34-year-old scored a second-leg hat-trick as the Italian champions overturned a 2-0 first-leg deficit to progress to the quarter-finals. He replicated Simeone’s gesture after the first game by grasping his genitals and thrusting out his groin following his tie-winning penalty. Argentinian Simeone was also fined 20,000 euros by UEFA for his celebration, with European football’s governing body following suit in Ronaldo’s case.


Lionel Messi bogged down by ’emotional fatigue’, says Cesar Luis Menotti

Lionel Messi is struck by “emotional fatigue” combining playing for Argentina and Barcelona, says technical director Cesar Luis Menotti. Messi is back in the Argentina squad for the first time since the World Cup, but Menotti cast doubt on whether the Barcelona forward, in red-hot form this season, would make his return during the international break despite head coach Lionel Scaloni’s insistence he would win his 129th cap.


American Airline pilots expect to test 737 MAX software fix in Boeing simulator

American Airlines Group Inc pilots expect to test Boeing Co’s 737 MAX software fix on the U.S. manufacturer’s simulators this weekend, officials from the pilots’ union told Reuters on Thursday, a key step in restoring pilots’ confidence in the aircraft after two fatal crashes. Boeing has been working on a software upgrade for an anti-stall system and pilot displays on its fastest-selling jetliner in the wake of the deadly Lion Air crash in Indonesia in October. Similarities between the flight path in the Lion Air incident and a fatal Ethiopian Airlines crash on March 10 have raised fresh questions about the system, and pilots want assurances that the update is solid. The two crashes killed everyone aboard both planes, a total of 346 people.


Steam’s redesigned library will show what’s happening with your games

Steam’s ages-old game library screen is getting a much-needed overhaul. Valve has previewed a redesign that keeps the familiar column of games on the left, but shakes up seemingly everything else. You’ll see rows for your recently played games and, crucially, game updates — if there’s a new character or an important upgrade, you’ll know it right away. Your friends list will also appear directly in the library to help you leap into their multiplayer matches. The tags you see in the Steam store will also help you find games in the library. You can look for just your open world titles, as an example.


Some Nokia 7 Plus phones caught sending data to Chinese server

Mistakes and software bugs are a normal fact of life but some can be more damning than others. At a time when phone manufacturers, especially Chinese ones, are fighting to wash their hands clean of any perception of political bias, even an allegedly innocent mistake could become a PR and legal mess. That might be the situation Finnish company HMD Global might find itself in after it has been discovered that a number of its Nokia 7 Plus phones have been sending data to a still-mysterious server located in China.


Christchurch shootings: NZ police admit error in naming murder charge victim

New Zealand police have admitted that the person named on a charge sheet as the murder victim of the alleged Christchurch mosques attacker is actually alive. They said the naming on the document for the first court appearance of Australian Brenton Tarrant, 28, was an administrative error. The attacks left 50 dead but only one charge of murder was initially brought. The error would not affect the legal case, police said. Police Minister Stuart Nash told New Zealand’s RNZ: “It was an administrative error, it will have no impact whatsoever on the court process, I understand it’s been rectified. Let’s bring this guy to justice.”


May gets 2-week Brexit reprieve from impatient EU

European Union leaders have given Prime Minister Theresa May two weeks’ reprieve, until April 12, before Britain could lurch out of the EU if she fails to persuade lawmakers to back the withdrawal treaty she concluded with Brussels. EU leaders had planned to endorse a shorter extension, to May 22, the eve of EU parliamentary elections, and leave any discussion of how to deal with May losing until next week. But diplomats said the prime minister singularly failed to reassure them she could win. Some sensed she did not believe it herself. After May left the room, and with French President Emmanuel Macron pitching a surprise ultimatum for Britain to be out, deal or no deal, by May 7 — the eve of a summit on the EU’s post-Brexit future — the meeting plunged into frantic debate.


About The Author

Osigweh Lilian Oluchi is a graduate of the University of Lagos where she obtained a B.A (Hons) in English, Masters in Public and International affairs (MPIA). Currently works with 1stnews as a Database Manager / Writer. [email protected]

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