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NIGERIA: Abiodun hails peaceful conduct of APC LG congress exercise

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Ogun State governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, on Saturday, commended leaders and members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state for the peaceful conduct of the local government congresses of the party.

Abiodun, who gave this commendation while addressing party faithful at the St. Saviour Anglican Primary, Ikenne, venue of the congress in Ikenne Local Government Area, said the peaceful manner in which the party conducted the exercise was a strong indication that APC remains the party to beat, not only in Ogun but in Nigeria.

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He expressed satisfaction over the consensus approach in electing a 27-man executive committee in each of the 20 local government areas in the state, noting that the approach would further entrench internal democracy in the party.

Abiodun, while recalling that the recent local government election in the state had been adjudged as the most transparent and fairest, said the building of the party from the bottom would go a long way in making it stronger and prepare it ahead of the general elections come 2023.

The governor, who described the turn out of the party faithful as impressive, thanked APC members for their patience and discipline, which according to him, have further endeared the party to the people.

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According to the Governor, the APC, due to influx of people from other parties, has grown since 2019 to become a dominant party in the State, assuring that no one would be discriminated against as a result of time of joining the party.

“Our party has grown from where we were in 2019 because people from other parties have joined us in large number.
This party is an inclusive party. No one will be discriminated upon whether new or old member. We will give everybody equal opportunity.

He thanked the Wale Ohu-led Local Government Congress Committee for ensuring a rancour free exercise in the state, saying the party would continue to welcome members from other parties.

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Abiodun, however, assured that his administration would continue to deliver on the electioneering promises by being inclusive, transparent and equitable.

“As you can see, the turnout here is impressive. Party faithful have conducted themselves in a manner devoid of rancour. We are the party to beat; APC in Ogun will continue to be inclusive and welcome new members from the other parties.

“I want to sincerely thank our members for their patience and discipline, as well as adherence to the party guidelines for the conduct of the local congress. And to this end, I will like to thank the Wale Ohu-led Local Congress Committee from the national headquarters of our party. He and his members have done a Yeoman’s job in ensuring party directives are adhered to.

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“And I, as the captain of the team in the state, I want to assure you that I will continue to do my best to deliver on my electoral promises”, the governor submitted.

In his remarks after monitoring some of the local governments with his team, the Chairman of the State Congress Committee, Wale Ohu noted that the 7- member Committee was sent from the national secretariat of the party to conduct free, fair and rancour free Congress, while applauding members for ensuring a peaceful exercise.

“This Congress is a fallout from the Ward Congress. The exercise in the State is excellent and perfect. We visited the 20 Local Government Areas in the state and we observed orderliness, consensus and it was great outing for our party members.

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“We hope the party will sustain this and still want to state further that there is no parallel congress anywhere in the state. APC is one and any other thing apart from this is null and void”, Ohu declared.

Three delegates were chosen to represent each local government at the national convention.

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Nigeria

Ijaws Diaspora: Queen Josephine Diete-Spiff of Twon Brass Kingdom Seeks Collaboration to Tackle Poverty, Trafficking, Violence Against Ijaw Women

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Queen of Twon Brass Kingdom and President of the Queens of the Niger Delta Initiative, Her Majesty, Dr Josephine Diete-Spiff, Esq JP called on the Ijaws in Diaspora on the need for an effective and efficient collaboration to meet the yearning and aspirations of Ijaw women in order for them to be empowered to achieve their fullest abilities and potential in every sphere of their life.

The Royal Queen made the call during her paper presentation on the occasion of the Ijaw Diaspora Convention held recently in New Jersey, United States of America.

Speaking on the theme: “Effective Collaboration with the Ijaw Diaspora: Hope for the Ijaw Women”, Queen Josephine noted that the Ijaw woman is majestic, full of strength, beautiful, hardworking, long-suffering, compassionate and caring for her children and loved ones.

She said that the description which depicted a typical Ijaw woman as with a pan on her head, a baby wrapped on her back and her work implements in her hands, ready to provide for the family under the hot African sun and Niger Delta rain, unperturbed by the harsh experiences of life shows she is tenacious and hardworking.

She said, “Unfortunately, today, the evil of industrialization in the name of oil and gas extraction and the attendant land grab/pollution have put a lot of our women out of the traditional livelihood occupation of fishing and farming which gave them prosperity in the past thus pushing them into poverty and loss of control of the children-a basis for the numerous vices among our youths today.

According to her, Ijaw women are mostly breadwinners and the nurturers of their families, adding that their livelihood was greatly impeded by the challenging environment of the Niger Delta, which though rich in oil and income generating opportunities, same are out of the reach of the Ijaw woman.

The wife of the former Rivers State Military Governor further emphasized that Ijaw women are agents of social change, if given the opportunity, adding that a collaboration with the Ijaw Diaspora will be a welcome development in changing the narrative of Ijaw Women in the livelihood scheme of survival.

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“The Ijaw woman’s means of survival are also threatened by a growing trend of farm produce theft and flooding. Added to her woes are kidnapping, herder invasion, and early widowhood, leading to loss of socio-economic subsistence. She also suffers from the attendant factors of poverty increased by lack of education, susceptibility to violence, cultism, health challenges, underage motherhood, in addition to some harmful traditional practices. The list is endless.”

Proposing avenues which require effective partnership, Queen Josephine called on the Ijaw Diaspora to collaborate with Ijaw women in homeland in areas of Interventions in Violence and Ill-Treatment Against Ijaw Women, Ijaw Women/Girl Child Education, Ijaw Women Empowerment, Encouraging Ijaw Women to Participate in Politics and take up Leadership Positions.

“It’s undeniable that the Ijaw Diaspora has assets for collaboration due to their international exposure, international contacts, financial resources, human and mental resources that override the economic capabilities of their counterparts in the homeland. Therefore, they can offer training, assist in primary healthcare, provide resources and partner with the Ijaw women in their homeland.

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“Collaboration with the Ijaw diaspora will be impossible without a formidable platform for operational collaboration and communication. One, therefore, recommends the creation of a most needed platform for efficient synergy between Ijaw diaspora and Ijaw women at home.

“So that the local Ijaw women can be empowered to achieve their fullest abilities and potential in every sphere of their life. For every Ijaw woman to fulfil the requirements of her heart and be free from any form of oppression, she needs to be liberated and confident in herself. Her desired accomplishment in life is a sine qua non for the benefit of the Ijaw ethnic nationality”, she stressed.

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