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Economic Hardship: CSO Gives FG Ultimatum, Threatens Nationwide Protest

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Edo Civil Society Organisations (EDOCSO), has given the President Bola Tinubu-led Federal Government to urgently end the suffering in Nigeria with two weeks, threatening that failure to do so will lead to mass protest.

The civil society organisations gave the ultimatum in Benin City, the Edo State capital, during its General Assembly on Saturday.

Reading a statement jointly signed by Comrade Austine Enabulele,
Interim Technical Committee Chairman, and Comrade Grace Okike, Interim Technical Committee Secretary, EDOCSO, the organisations lamented that the economic hardship in the land is becoming unbearable.

“We want to state clearly that failure for the federal government to swing into emergency action to end this HUNGER and economic suffering in Nigeria within the next two week the President and his Vice should resign so we can elect a better leader, or we at Edo Civil Society Organisations (EDOCSO) will have no option than to mobilize other citizens all over the country on a Tinubu/Shetima must go protest, and we shall ensure a change in the leadership of Nigeria government to prove that indeed section 14 subsection 2a can be activated by any person elected into place of leadership.

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“We shall ensure a better tomorrow for Nigerians and not this present better yesterday than we are currently experiencing. Let’s not be discouraged by the show of ineptitude of our leaders but focus on taking back our country from the hands of greedy politicians,” they added.

According to the civil society organisations, since the first day President Tinubu took over the leadership of Nigeria, “the country has known no peace in terms of our daily living.”

The EDOCSO added: “Beginning from the increase in fuel price till date, continuous rising of dollar that has affected everything in Nigeria including farm produce that comes from the local farms to our markets today, this has made the saying that whatever goes up must surely come down an irony, considering Dollar-naira exchange rate and suffering in Nigeria.”

They continued: “With dismay, pain and agony we have watched Nigerians groan in pains even when we try to assist as individuals from our own personal struggles is still never enough, and this has led to the continuous rising of suicide being committed by Nigerians everyday because they can no longer bear the hunger and sufferings, women are turning to widows and men widowers, children becoming fatherless or motherless all because, parents can no longer bear the pains of watching their children suffering, as a result of not being able to provide a meal for their children.”

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According to EDOCSO, “Is it the crime that has increased all over the 36 states including the FCT, everyday we hear and experience kidnapping, armed robbery all over the country, that even the common local farmer, petty trader and mechanics are now being kidnapped in Nigeria in exchange for whatever the kidnappers can scoop for themselves from innocent citizens as ransom.

“The Federal Government has suddenly become somewhat deaf and dumb that they have refused to act or do anything about it, the almighty giant of Africa has suddenly become handicapped.

“Today in our markets, we can not even buy products manufactured locally, even the foods we bring from our local farms, all because the prices of food and all other things are going up every blessed day and the government supposedly has agencies that control market prices, while these agencies watch in their slumber with their hands folded doing nothing to correct these anomalies in the system and yet we say we have a government in Nigeria?

“Citizens get sick in Nigeria today and can’t afford money to buy common paracetamol, there are no health centers or government hospitals to go to by citizens to be attended to with little or no money.

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“In some cases, you go to the very limited hospitals and you are not well attended to by professionals because of its shortage, you can’t get drugs from these few hospitals that are available and yet the wife of the president could donate 100,000 dollars to Sierra Leone to build a hospital when we have needs for it here in Nigeria.”

EDOCSO stated that, “We also wants to state here that we are most disappointed in the National House Of Assemblies who have become a puppet in the hand of the executive not knowing the power the constitution gave them to serve the people, unfortunately we have slumbering representatives who originally don’t know why they were sent to the National House of Assemblies.

“They feel it’s their time to enrich themselves at the expense of Nigerians and we think to the extent of their uselessness, they should all go home, so Nigerians can now conveniently know they have a country without legislators.

“Flowing from the above, it is clear of the general sufferings that Nigerians have been plunged into by the federal government since the day of taking over, due to the removal of fuel subsidy without proper plans on ground to ensure the welfare of Nigerians, and of course the further devalue of our Naira till date.

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“We say to the Federal Government and president Bola Ahmed Tinubu that he has failed in his responsibilities and agreement reached with Nigerians, in Section 14 subsection 2b and Section 16 subsection 1b of the 1999 Constitution of the federal republic of Nigeriand as such have made the following demands.”

The civil society organisations therefore urged the Federal Government to urgently “put in place all machineries to ensure proper market price regulations to end the current economic hardship in the country,” and also put “all economic processes to give value to our currency be put in place.”

The organisations also demanded that “a proper fair and citizens friendly policies be put in place to ensure economic stability in the country,” and “all security measures to end insecurity be activated immediately.”

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Unite for Change: Nigerians Urged to Protest Peacefully to Avoid Economic and Social Fallout

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In light of the upcoming protests planned across Nigeria, we urge all citizens to engage in peaceful demonstrations. It is crucial to express our grievances and demand change without resorting to violence, which only exacerbates the issues we face as a nation.

Recent examples from around the world highlight the destructive outcomes of violent protests. In *France, the yellow vest protests, which began as peaceful demonstrations against fuel tax increases, escalated into violent clashes with police, resulting in significant property damage and injuries.

Similarly, in **Chile*, protests over economic inequality and living costs turned violent, leading to widespread destruction and a heavy-handed government response. These instances serve as a reminder that violence undermines the legitimacy of protests and often leads to severe repercussions for all involved.

In a recent interview with Victor Walsh Oluwatemi, the Chief Executive of the Africa Development Studies Centre (ADSC), he emphasized the importance of non-violent protests.

“We must learn from the recent events in *Kenya*, where protests against rising living costs and economic hardships turned violent, resulting in severe economic disruptions and further strain on the country’s fragile economy,” Oluwatemi stated. “The violence not only led to loss of lives and property but also scared away investors, causing long-term damage to the nation’s economic prospects.”

We acknowledge the frustrations and hardships that many young Nigerians face. With high unemployment rates and limited opportunities, it is understandable why the youth might feel they have nothing to lose. However, resorting to violence is not the solution. Violence only leads to more suffering and delays the progress we seek.

“We understand the deep frustrations felt by our youth,” said Oluwatemi. “But history has shown us that non-violent movements can bring about significant and lasting change. The Civil Rights Movement in the United States and the Indian Independence Movement led by Mahatma Gandhi are prime examples of how peaceful protests can lead to meaningful and transformative outcomes.”

To ensure our message is heard and to bring about the change we desperately need, we must remain united in our commitment to non-violence. We urge community leaders, activists, and all citizens to advocate for peaceful protests and to discourage any form of violence. Let us stand together and show the world that we can demand justice and change without compromising our principles or endangering our communities.

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EXPOSED! How they tried to bribe Justice Nwosu-Iheme but she refused-Hon EJ

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A Federal Commissioner of the Code of Conduct Bureau, Honourable Ehiozuwa Agbonayinma has recounted how Justice Chioma Nwosu-Iheme of the Supreme Court was kidnapped when she was ruling on a case that deals with electoral fraud which involved him as a candidate in an election.

He accused INEC of rigging the election, pointing out that the perpetrator was apprehended by the DSS.

He noted that they had brought the culprit before both a tribunal and a court. However, he stated that despite the evidence provided by the DSS, the tribunal’s chairman dismissed the report as inconsequential.

He further recounted how the appeal process unfolded, particularly highlighting the integrity of Justice Iheme Nwosu. He alleged that despite attempts to bribe her, Justice Nwosu remained steadfast and was subsequently kidnapped, an ordeal during which her police orderly and driver were tragically killed.

He said in an interview with Channels TV, ”I contested for Election and my mandate was stolen. INEC rigged the election and the man who did it was caught by the DSS. The DSS did a fantastic investigation and they took the man to court, they took him to the tribunal.

The Chairman of the Tribunal said the DSS report is inconsequential. At the end of the day, we went to appeal Court and the Appeal Court Judge, Justice Iheme Nwosu who is a wonderful woman.

They tried to bribe Justice Nwosu but she refused and she was kidnapped, they killed her police orderly and her driver. She was in captive for over 30 days and today that woman is now the Justice of the Supreme Court. That is the kind of woman that should be celebrated in this country.”

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Speaker Abbas endorses MoU with UN CEDAW on women empowerment

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…says Reps open to partnership with CSOs, others on gender equality

By Gloria Ikibah

The Speaker of the House of Representatives Hon. Abbas Tajudeen, on Tuesday, signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Office of the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women Nigeria Member (OCEDAWNM) on legislative interventions on issues affecting women.

At the epoch ceremony, Speaker Abbas restated the commitment of the 10th House, under his leadership, to empowering women and ensuring gender equality in politics, governance and other spheres of life.

Speaker Abbas pointed out that the MoU “uniquely attests to recognition of the need to marshal out diverse resources to achieve our 2024 International Women Development (IWD) themed: ‘Inspired Inclusion.’”

He said: “It is barely one week after my endorsement of a similar Parliamentary Development Programme for the 10th House sponsored by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) for capacity building of members and staff of the House of Representatives.

“We are here again this afternoon to enter another working agreement with the United Nations group on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women to promote the vision of our Legislative Agenda on inclusion and affirmative action for good governance.

“There is no better way to underscore the dedication of the House towards rebuilding the confidence of our people through pragmatic citizen’s engagement and capacity strengthening.”

The Speaker said given the huge gender gaps in many sectors, there was the need for proactive measures to consolidate the 10th House Legislative Agenda’s vision of promoting inclusion and affirmative action for good governance, and promoting innovative and technology-based approaches to stimulate economic growth and ensure that no one is left behind in line with the SDG2030 & AU3063 Agendas.

He also said the measures should include harnessing existing opportunities for replicating good practice models in women’s peace and security, climate change management and renewable energy, and fin-tech, e-commerce and market access that could expand livelihoods and catalyse economic revival at the grassroots level.

He stressed the need to rebuild confidence in the people through pragmatic citizen engagement and capacity strengthening for key stakeholders as duty-bearers and rights holders.

Speaker Abbas added: “I urge our development partners, private Sector Companies and civil society associates to identify pillars in the partnership log frame where they can collaborate maximally to help realise concrete and transformative results

“I look forward to receiving the out ones of your first contact meeting with details of priority interventions, strategic actions with timelines that will help utilize our eight-fold legislative mandate to advance our global and regional obligations in a way that responds to our local realities and contexts.

“The House will provide necessary legislative actions and support for the success of this partnership.”

The Speaker noted that the House recently had an ‘Open Week’ to engage citizens during which the members presented their one-year scorecard in office.

“Nigerians responded with great enthusiasm. The bottom-top approach intrinsic in the Open NASS Week and the unmatched performance of the House as meticulously articulated in the scorecard were greatly acknowledged by Nigerians who attended the Open Week and have largely enhanced our legislative image and heightened people’s confidence in the 10th House as a bastion of the common man,” he said.

Speaker Abbas added that the House would “continue to engage our constituents because they are the reason we are here.”

The Vice-Chairperson, UN CEDAW, Madam Esther Eghobamien-Mshelia, who led the OCEDAWNM and with whom the Speaker signed the MoU, commended Speaker Abbas and members of the House for their efforts towards gender equality and women empowerment so far, while urging them to implement the agreement towards achieving more results.

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