The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has reserved
judgement in the appeals filed by the Peoples Democratic Party
(PDP) and its governorship candidate, Musa Wada, as well as Natasha
Akpoti of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), challenging the
re-election of Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello.
At the final hearing on Monday, Wada’s counsel, Jibrin Okutepa,
urged the appellate court to upturn the decision of the Kogi State
Governorship Election Petition Tribunal.
He insisted that there were overwhelming evidence that the
election was marred by electoral malpractices.
On his part, counsel for the Independent National Electoral
Commission (INEC), Dr Alex Izinyon, asked the court to dismiss the
Lawyers to Governor Bello and the All Progressives Congress
(APC), Joseph Daudu and Ahmed Raji, aligned themselves with the
submissions of Dr Izinyon.
After listening to the arguments, the five-man panel of justices
led by Justice Adamu Jauro reserved judgement in the appeals.
Wada and the PDP had in December 2019 approached the Tribunal,
asking it to order INEC to disqualify Governor Bello from
contesting the 2019 governorship election in Kogi State.
In the appeal filed by the SDP and its governorship candidate
challenging the governor’s election, the appellants also alleged
massive electoral malpractices and falsification of certificates on
the part of the deputy governor of the state, Edward Onoja.
The five-man panel of justices also reserved judgement in the
appeal filed by the Democratic Peoples Party (DPP) to a date that
would be communicated to the parties.
The Lagos State Safety Commission has sealed some
lounges, bars, spas, and night clubs for flouting the government’s
directives on the closure of social clubs in a bid to curb the
spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) in the state.
The Director-General of the Commission, Lanre Mojola, disclosed
this on Monday while giving an update on the recent exercise
carried out by the agency’s Compliance and Enforcement teams.
He listed the areas to include Lagos Island, Surulere, and
Abule-Egba among others, stressing that the government has
zero-tolerance for breach of safety precautionary measures and
would not condone flagrant disobedience of its directives.
“Mass gathering of people in social clubs, spas, bars, betting
and gaming centres, negates the safety guidelines,” the agency’s
He added, “Our preliminary investigations revealed that some
bars and night clubs are not complying with safety guidelines and
closure directive issued by the state government.”
Mojola stated that the Commission has started issuing
provisional safety compliance certificates to social clubs that
have registered and have had their facilities verified for
He, therefore, urged other social centres that have yet to
register for the “Open Initiative” policy to do so, stressing that
the facilities that have already been issued certificates were
still not allowed to open until stipulated guidelines and
pronouncements were made by the governor.
The agency’s chief said registration and verification were free
and user-friendly and appealed to business owners to support the
government by complying with all safety guidelines and protocols as
part of efforts to contain the spread of coronavirus in the
US President Donald Trump leapt to the defense
Monday of his movie idol John Wayne, after California Democrats
called for the actor’s name to be removed from a local airport due
to “racist” comments.
Wayne — the late, macho star of Hollywood westerns such as “True
Grit” — held “white supremacist, anti-LGBT, and anti-Indigenous
views,” the Orange County Democratic Party said in a resolution
The group pointed to a 1971 interview with Playboy magazine,
where Wayne was quoted saying “I believe in white supremacy” and “I
don’t feel guilty about the fact that five or 10 generations ago
these people were slaves.”
“The Democratic Party of Orange County condemns John Wayne’s
racist and bigoted statements, and calls for John Wayne’s name and
likeness to be removed from the Orange County airport,” Friday’s
The move comes at a time when historic statues and monuments are
being removed across the country, as Americans grapple with the
legacy of racism.
Vast nationwide anti-racism protests followed African American
George Floyd’s death in police custody last month.
“Now the Do Nothing Democrats want to take off the name John
Wayne from an airport,” tweeted Trump. “Incredible stupidity!”
Trump has called himself a “longtime fan” of Wayne, appearing
alongside the actor’s daughter Aissa at Wayne’s birthplace memorial
in Iowa during his 2016 presidential campaign.
Wayne’s family has dismissed the Playboy interview comments as a
“single outlier interview from half a century ago” that does not
“It would be an injustice to judge someone based on an interview
that’s being used out of context,” Wayne’s son Ethan told CNN
last year. “They’re trying to contradict how he lived his life, and
how he lived his life was who he was.”
Wayne starred in more than 150 films over six decades. He
was nominated for three Oscars, winning best actor for 1969’s “True
The Democrats’ resolution noted the population of Orange County,
near Los Angeles, has grown far more diverse since 1979 — the year
Wayne died, and the airport was named for him.
They have called for its name to be restored to “Orange County