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IDO-OSUN : OBA ABIMBOLA MOURNS DEATH OF A CLOSE ALLY

PUSH NEWS 24 INTERNATIONAL : May 19th 2024

Push News 24 International

Headline: Oba Abimbola Akile Balogun Mourns the Demise of Alayemore of Ido-Osun, HRM Oba (Dr.) Aderemi Adeen Adedapo

May 19, 2024 – The traditional and royal circles of Nigeria are enveloped in grief as Oba Abimbola Akile Balogun expressed profound sorrow over the passing of his close ally, the Alayemore of Ido-Osun, HRM Oba (Dr.) Aderemi Adeen Adedapo. The monarch’s demise marks a significant loss for the Ido-Osun community and the larger Yoruba kingdom.

Oba Balogun, the revered leader of Okun-Ade, Yoruba African Kingdom in Dallas, Texas, in a release made available to the media and signed by the Director of Palace Communications, paid homage to the life and legacy of Oba Adedapo, highlighting his unwavering dedication to the welfare and development of Ido-Osun. In his statement, Oba Balogun remarked, “HRM Oba Aderemi Adeen Adedapo was more than a fellow monarch; he was a brother, a confidant, and a pillar of strength. His wisdom, leadership, and compassion will be dearly missed.”

The late Oba Adedapo was renowned for his relentless efforts in promoting cultural heritage, fostering unity, and spearheading various community development projects. His tenure as the Alayemore saw numerous initiatives aimed at improving the standard of living for his people and preserving the rich traditions of Ido-Osun.

Consoling the indigenes of Ido-Osun, Oba Akile Balogun urged the community to draw strength from the remarkable legacy left behind by their beloved monarch. “In these trying times, Ido-Osun should hold firm to the values and vision that Oba Adedapo instilled in us. Let his memory be a guiding light as we navigate this period of mourning,” he said.

The passing of Oba Adedapo has indeed left a void in the hearts of many, but his impact on the cultural and socio-economic landscape of Ido-Osun remains indelible. The community, along with fellow monarchs and well-wishers, continues to offer prayers and support to the royal family during this difficult time.

As the traditional rites commence, the people of Ido-Osun and the wider Yoruba kingdom will honor the memory of a monarch whose reign was characterized by progress, unity, and an unwavering commitment to his people’s prosperity.

Push News 24 International extends heartfelt condolences to the Ido-Osun community and joins in mourning the loss of a great leader, HRM Oba (Dr.) Aderemi Adeen Adedapo.

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PASSPORT: US BASED TRADITIONAL RULER COMMENDS INTERIOR MINISTER

PUSH NEWS 24 INTERNATIONAL : February 29th, 2024

HRM Oba Abimbola Akile Balogun Commends Minister of Interior and Nigerian Immigration Service for Introducing Contactless Passport Technology

In a recent statement, the Oba of Dallas, His Royal Majesty, (HRM) Oba Abimbola Akile Balogun has expressed commendations towards the Federal Minister of Interior, Mr Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, and the Nigerian Immigration Services for their initiative to implement contactless technology for international passport applications for diasporans. This views came ahead of the preparation for the anticipated launch of the system on March 8, 2024.

Oba Akile’s statement said, in his interaction with some stakeholders he was was able to confirm that “the introduction of contactless technology aims to streamline and enhance the passport application process for Nigerians in diaspora, making it more convenient and efficient for Nigerian citizens to access their passports easily”.

By adopting this advanced technology, applicants home and abroad will experience faster processing times and reduced physical contact during the application process, this aligns with global trends in digitalization and modernization” Oba Akile said.

The US based traditional ruler emphasized the importance of embracing innovative solutions to improve public services, especially in critical areas such as immigration and passport issuance. He lauded the efforts of the Tinubu led government, dedication of the Minister of Interior and the Nigerian Immigration Service for their commitment to enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of passport services in the country.

While assuring Nigerians living abroad of the sincerity of the government in this regard, the Ijebu-born leader of Iga Okun-Ade Yoruba African Community assured that “the implementation of contactless technology reflects Nigeria’s commitment to leveraging digital solutions to enhance security and convenience for its citizens and visitors. The system is expected to enhance the integrity of passport issuance processes, reduce the risk of identity theft, and improve overall service delivery.”

The government’s proactive approach towards embracing technological advancements is a testament to its commitment to modernizing public services and enhancing the overall experience for citizens and visitors alike”.

Push News 24 International reports that as the March 8, 2024 launch date approaches, anticipation builds among citizens and stakeholders eager to experience the benefits of the new contactless passport application system.

With a thriving environment for racketeering, process for obtaining the Nigerian passport has turned the booklet into a hire purchase document where applicants pay official cost at point of application, connoting preliminary down payment. This is the practice nationwide. Applicants who fail to comply with this process risk delayed services characterised by uncertainty, except for Very Important Persons, VIP,  and those with direct contact with top officials of NIS who enjoy some level of waivers exempting them from any form of bargains. Despite this, a balance sum is made as gift at the end of the exercise to the facilitating official in appreciation, but at the discretion of the applicant.

Sadly, some of these NIS officials have also extended these unethical practices to foreigners and the country’s missions abroad. As a government agency providing direct services to foreigners, NIS is the face of Nigeria.  How it carries out its activities and obligations rub off on the country’s image with implications on public perception. Its conduct can be used to gauge corruption in the course of passport, visa, work permit and expatriate quota issuance. The hire purchase process is embodied in two recognised methods of application, namely: online and physical through an NIS official. In the online, applicants are required to apply through dedicated portal on the internet where payment is made and appointment date assigned for biometric capture. Fixed date for collection is not known, and applicants need not contact NIS officials prior to application.  

After releasing royal blessings for the progress and development of Nigeria, HRM Oba Abimbola Akile Balogun’s commendation underscores the significance of the introduction of contactless passport technology and highlights the collaborative efforts between the government and relevant agencies to drive positive change and innovation in the country’s immigration processes.

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DIASPORA DYNAMICS: UNLEASHING THE POTENTIAL OF NIGERIAN EXPATS FOR ECONOMIC ADVANCEMENT- OBA OF DALLAS

PUSH NEWS 24 INTERNATIONAL : February 23rd, 2024

Diaspora Dynamics: Unleashing the Potential of Nigerian Expats for Economic Advancement

In an increasingly interconnected world, the role of diaspora communities in contributing to their home countries’ development cannot be overstated. Among these global citizens, Nigerian expatriates stand out for their potential to drive economic advancement back home.” these were the words of Akile of Okun-Ade, Yoruba African Kingdom in Dallas, TX, HRM Oba Abimbola Akile Balogun.

Oba Abimbola in his reaction to Push News 24 International questions on the high cost of living in Nigeria delve into the dynamics of the Nigerian diaspora and explores how their talents and resources can be harnessed for national progress.

While unveiling their potential: Nigeria boasts a vast diaspora scattered across the globe, with millions of Nigerians residing in countries such as the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, and others. Beyond their numbers, Oba Akile said “Nigerian expatriates possess a wealth of skills, expertise, and financial resources that can be instrumental in propelling the country’s economic growth.”

The revered traditional ruler stressed that “One of the most tangible ways Nigerian expats can contribute to economic advancement is through secured investment and entrepreneurship.”

“Many members of the diaspora have established successful businesses abroad and possess the knowledge and capital to initiate ventures back home. From technology startups to agricultural initiatives, these investments have the potential to create jobs, stimulate innovation, and drive overall economic expansion.”

Concerned about the need of Knowledge Transfer and Capacity Building, His Rolyal Majesty was quoted as saying ” in addition to financial contributions, Nigerian expatriates play a crucial role in knowledge transfer and capacity building. Through mentorship programs, partnerships with local institutions, and participation in educational initiatives, diaspora members can facilitate the transfer of skills and expertise in various sectors, including healthcare, education, and technology. By nurturing talent and empowering local communities, they contribute to building a more robust and competitive workforce”.

According to Akile Diaspora Engagement Initiatives have been one of the areas where his kingdom and members of the Yoruba African Community have created a platform for recognizing the importance of diaspora engagement.

Push News 24 International reports that the Nigerian government and various organizations have launched initiatives to tap into the potential of Nigerian expatriates. These include investment forums, networking events, and policy frameworks aimed at facilitating remittances, easing business regulations, and fostering collaboration between diaspora members and local stakeholders. Such initiatives create avenues for dialogue, partnership, and collective action toward shared development goals.Challenges and Opportunities.

Oba Abimbola also painstakingly said that despite their immense potential, Nigerian expatriates face challenges in fully harnessing their contributions to economic advancement. These include bureaucratic hurdles, regulatory barriers, and concerns about political instability and security risks. Addressing these challenges requires concerted efforts from both the Nigerian government and diaspora communities to create an enabling environment for investment, entrepreneurship, and collaboration.

As Nigeria charts its path toward economic advancement and prosperity, leveraging the potential of its diaspora emerges as a strategic imperative. By tapping into the talents, resources, and networks of Nigerian expatriates, the country can unlock new opportunities for growth, innovation, and inclusive development.

Oba Akile concluded ny saying “With continued collaboration and engagement, the Nigerian diaspora stands poised to play a pivotal role in shaping the nation’s future economic landscape.”

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NEW YEAR MSG : OBA AKILE ADMONISH NIGERIANS TO BE GOOD AMBASSADORS IN DIASPORA

PUSH NEWS 24 INTERNATIONAL : January 1st, 2024

NEW YEAR MESSAGE : OBA AKILE ADMONISH NIGERIANS TO BE GOOD AMBASSADORS IN DIASPORA

The Akile of Iga Okunade in Dallas,Texas , HRM Oba Abimbola Akile Balogun, had while celebrating the yuletide holidays and New Year has admonished Nigerians in Diaspora to emulate the life of Jesus Christ who is an embodiment of forgiveness and good conducts

In a statement by his palace spokesman, Oba Abimbola praised Nigerians for their resilience in facing and surmounting of the daunting challenges in the past year as they sojourn outside Nigeria.

“As good ambassadors, the end of the year 2023 and the beginning of a new one provides us all with an opportunity for reflection and introspection, as well as to plan,” he said in the statement. “But most importantly, it is a time to give thanks to the Almighty God for the gift and for his care and provision to all of us.”

The US based royal father, urged Nigerians to show optimism and be encouraged by the fact that Iga Okunade’s Oba-in-Council and other key stakeholders would not relent in sustaining the ongoing peaceful co-existence with their host country and would provide the needed support to Nigerians with the aim of improving the general well-being of our people.

“The year 2023 was no doubt challenging,” he said. “But I’m happy our people rose to the occasion and triumphed in their various fields of endeavor. The lessons of the past year will serve as a useful instrument that will guide us to fruition in the years ahead.”

Oba Akile thanked the Yoruba African Community and other distinguished persons who stood by him through thick and thin, promising that their interest, welfare, and well-being would remain his firm commitment, mission, and purpose throughout his reign as a custodian of the Yoruba Heritage.

He assured Nigerians in the United States that his reign would continue to support and implement policies, programmes, and projects that have a direct and positive impact on them.

The traditional ruler, however, urged the people to be vigilant against saboteurs who have continued to wreck the good image of Nigeria abroad.

He encouraged individuals and groups to cooperate and participate in all activities initiated by the Yoruba African Kingdom in Texas with the aim of preserving our culture, globalizing our heritage, and upholding our norms and traditional inclinations ”.

For the royal father, this is necessary to ensure that as we integrate and interact with our chosen environments, we do not lose our ancestral values.

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UMUAHIA : TINUBU’S MINISTER WINS, AS LABOUR PARTY OGAH LOSE REPS SIT

PUSH NEWS 24 INTERNATIONAL : September 5th, 2023

UMUAHIA : TINUBU MINISTER WINS AS LABOUR PARTY OGAH LOSE REPS SIT

The National Assembly Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Umuahia, the Abia State capital, on Wednesday, nullified the election of Amobi Ogah of the Labour Party representing Isiukwuato Umunneochi Federal Constituency on grounds of non-compliance to the Electoral Act.

Delivering Judgement in the Petition tagged EPT/AB/HR/8/2023 on Wednesday in Umuahia, the three-member Panel 1 of the National Assembly Election Petition Tribunal said the candidate of the Labour Party did not comply with the provisions of the Electoral Act.

“How a candidate is sponsored by a political party is both pre- and post-election, there is no evidence of giving 21 days’ notice to INEC by the respondent before conducting their primary election.

“No date of primaries was placed before us; no evidence of primaries and the 3rd respondent has always said it’s an internal affair of the party.

“We have tabulated and found out that the results computed by the petition are correct and the results computed by the 1st respondent are dis-countenanced,” the tribunal ruled.

Ogah had argued that the acceptance of the ministerial appointment of Hon Nkeiruka Onyejeocha as minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria was a sign that she had abandoned her petition. But the tribunal in her ruling dismissed the submission of the lawmaker.

We are of the view that Section 66 is not applicable to this scenario because the petitioner is not a lawmaker of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The scenario prohibited by law is a person being a member of two arms of government,” the court ruled.

The Independent National Electoral Commission had on February 28 declared the Labour Party candidate, Ogah, as the winner of the Isiukwuato Umunneochi Federal Constituency election with a total of 11,769 votes against the current Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Nkeiruka Onyejeocha, who the commission said scored a total of 8,752 votes.

Not happy with the result, Onyejeocha filed a petition before the National Assembly Election Petition Tribunal, seeking the nullification of Ogah’s election in seven reliefs contained in her petition.

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JUNE 12 : HON OSAFILE GREETS AMUWO ODOFIN RESIDENTS

PUSH NEWS 24 INTERNATIONAL:June 12th, 2023

Member -Elect representating Amuwo Odofin Constituency 1 at the Lagos State House of Assembly, under the Labour Party, Hon Stella Foluke Osafile has sent greetings to her constituents as Nigeria celebrates her democracy day.

In a statement personally signed by her and made available to Push News 24 International, the LP candidate was seen also appealing for the prayers and support of her constituency.

Below is the full release:

JUNE 12: IT IS OUR DEMOCRACY DAY
.

Dear Fellow Constituent

Firstly, I bless God for preserving our lives and making the thanksgiving of yesterday a reality. Seeing your beautiful faces in that large turnout yesterday gladdened my heart and encouraged me more towards what binds us together as a people than what divides us. Starting from the humor of the MC, to the powerful message for the day, to the dancing steps of our old and young, and many more, it has further strengthened my hope and confidence in the community and what we can achieve together as a people if we can stay united in the growth and development of our constituency.

Today is June 12, 2023. It is exactly 30 years today since Nigerians matched out in large numbers to the polling unit to exercise their civil right to elect their president in a peaceful atmosphere, and in which the late MKO Moshood Kashimawo Abiola was duly elected in an election that was rated as the most peaceful, free and fair election in our electoral history .

The annulment of that election result by then former military head of state, General Ibrahim Babangida, didn’t go down well with the people, the international community and actually led to the deaths of many Nigerians across the country in a civil unrest that lasted for many years. The June 12 democratic exercise of that day is what led to the June 12 remembrance today.

It is a history of pain for every tenet and lover of democracy. It is a day in our history that must not repeat itself. It is bittersweet for many of us who witnessed such an experience, and this is why we must guard very well our electoral rights for the growth and development of Nigeria.

Today is Democracy Day as assigned in the Nigerian National Constitution as altered, and we must begin with the count of our gains and not just the horrible events of history.

Today, I am a product of the democratic govenrnace demand that many lost their lives 30 years ago. This is what you did for me by standing firm in that scorching sun of May 18, 2023, despite intimidation and harassment.

Our democratic process is emerging but still has a lot of issues to fix, and we must ensure we get better as we count our days by standing for a free and fair electoral process always.

As your honorable representative in the Lagos Assembly Chamber, I need your continuous prayers and moral support to deliver as expected. I promise, by the grace of God, to work with colleagues in the house in knowledge and idea sharing that will deliver legislative government to the Amuwo Odofin Constituency 1 that I represent. I will defend your right to vote, your right to education, Medicare, and general constituency development.

God willing, we will be having our town hall meeting every quarter to discuss all our areas of concern as a constituency.

It is a new dawn, and we can only get better as a community, in Lagos State and in Nigeria as a whole.

Thank you all. I love you, and I bless God for your lives.

God bless the Amuwo Odofin Community.

God bless Lagos State.

God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Signed

Hon Stella Foluke Osafile
Hon representing Amuwo Odofin Constituency 1, Lagos State.

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DEMOCRACY DAY : SANUSI CAUTIONS NIGERIANS AGAINST ACTIONS, STATEMENTS TO TRUNCATE THE POLITICAL PROCESS

PUSH NEWS 24 INTERNATIONAL : June 12, 2023

Amuwo Odofin All Progressives Congress (APC) Stalwart, Prince Lanre Sanus (PLS), monday advised Nigerians not to take for granted the continued democratic dispensation in the country since 1999 but must guard against actions, statements and moves which can truncate the political process.

Sanusi also advised the people to always be vigilant and speak against anti-democratic policies and actions which are capable of subverting the rule of law.

In his statement the Lagos born Prince stated this in Amuwo-Odofin congratulatating Nigerians on the continuos anniversary of unbroken elected government in the country.

The House of Rep faithful in his anniversary message also canvassed strict adherence to the principles of rule of law, separation of powers, sovereignty of parliament, independence of the judiciary, and freedom of the press, adding that, “our constitutional institutions must be preserved and protected”.

In his words, “As we celebrate democracy today, I congratulate our people and express my conviction that this system of government is the best so far invented. However, it goes beyond the conduct of elections to put leaders in office.

“Democracy involves strict adherence to rule of law as against the rule of men. It is about respect for due process and following laid down procedures. It is about respect for and building of institutions.

“That is why we cannot be celebrating Democracy Day without canvassing for caution on some recent negative developments in our polity, particularly as we commence a new dispensation.

These include abuse of office in a manner that suggests persecution and oppression of perceived enemies, stifling of free expression, undermining of democratic institutions, and impunity on the part of certain persons who behave as though they are above the laws of the land.

These developments should be of concern to all democrats. Other political and opinion leaders who decided to veil their sight as if they are not seeing these infractions on democracy and choose to keep quiet, should know that they equally pose danger to the survival of our country.

“History will not be fair to us if we allow our complacency to jeopardize democracy. We all must be able to speak out with strong voice on issues that constitute a danger to democracy. Eternal vigilance, they say, is the price of liberty.

“At this point, let us remember and salute our heroes of democracy, those who toiled and paid different prices for us to have elected government, particularly, those who paid the ultimate price with their lives. Their labour shall definitely not be in vain.“It is important for all of us to note that Nigeria will continue to exist after the 2023 polls.

We must therefore not do anything that will threaten the existence of the country or its peace, unity and tranquility.

Let me use this occasion to urge our all our people in Amuwo Odofin Federal Constituency to avoid making and circulating hate speech which can further accentuate our fault lines and set one section of the country against the other. Rather,

we should all embrace tolerance and the need to be our brother’s keeper. We all have a lot to gain from a united and stronger Nigeria than having a nation embedded in conflict.

“As we celebrate Democracy Day, it is my wish that Nigerians and in particular, Amuwo Odofin Federal Constituency will continue to enjoy good governance, provided by freely elected government and sustained by strong and impartial institutions, all of which will lead to the creation of a developed society with the citizens freely enjoying a high standard of living,” Sanusi stated.

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AMUWO ODOFIN: TINUBU WILL NOT LABOUR IN VAIN – SANUSI

PUSH NEWS 24 INTERNATIONAL: June 6th,2023

AMUWO ODOFIN: TINUBU WILL NOT LABOUR IN VAIN – SANUSI

Breathing a sigh of relief from the aborted NLC strike over subsidy removal, All Progressives Congress (APC) Chieftain in Amuwo Odofin Federal Constituency, Prince Lanre Sanusi has declared confidently to Nigerians that Asiwaju Bola Tinubu will not labour in vain and will succeed as the 16th President of Nigeria.

According to the All Progressives Congress (APC) 2023 House of Representative Candidate, Tinubu’s attributes and his efforts in reaching out to those that matters stands him out as a responsive and transformational leader who is interested in the welfare and economic prosperity of the people.

He said: “For a long time I have nursed the feeling that Tinubu will be Nigeria’s President because I see in him a true Nigerian who believes in everybody regardless of his tribe, creed or faith.”

Speaking while receiving some party leaders in his Constituency on Monday, Sanusi said the idea of reaching out to stakeholders regarding Nigeria affairs rather than grandstanding is what will differentiate Tinubu from other past leaders.

PLS as he is fondly called, also reaffirmed Asiwaju administration’s commitment to the welfare of workers and other self employed Nigerians as mentioned during his presidential campaigns.

Speaking to Push News 24 International, Sanusi emphasized that the welfare of workers and indeed Nigerians would remain a top priority throughout this administration.”

Despite not been the spokesperson for the government, PLS said as a party man he owes his constituents in Amuwo Odofin Federal Constituency the duty to update and guide them through various policy decisions of government and how it will affect them.

Sanusi expressed his appreciation for the unreserved support of his constituents in the last general elections and assured that his cardinal mandate would be to focus on enhancing the well-being of all stakeholders in Amuwo Odofin Federal Constituency.

“I want to assure you that Asiwaju will continue to look for ways and means to improve the life of all workers so that they will continue to be more intellectually built with improve efficiency and professionalism in carrying out their duties.

“I also want to assure that this next four years, the welfare of Nigerians will be of priorities, as this current administration is poise to return the country back to economic development and prosperity.” he said.

Sanusi acknowledging the role of the public servants and labour movement significant contributions to the successful implementation of government policies and programs was quick to advise that no one or group should be coerced against his or her will. He attributed the past achievements of Asiwaju to the harmonious relationship between the labour movement, public service and political office holders, stressing that the new president of Nigeria will not labour in vain.

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US 2024 : DESPITE CLOCKING 82, JOE BIDEN DECLARES RE-ELECTION BID, POISE TO BE US OLDEST PRESIDENT

PUSH NEWS 24 INTERNATIONAL: April 25th, 2023

US 2024 : DESPITE CLOCKING 82, JOE BIDEN DECLARES RE-ELECTION BID, POISE TO BE US OLDEST PRESIDENT

President Joe Biden speaks during a ceremony honoring the Council of Chief State School Officers’ 2023 Teachers of the Year in the Rose Garden of the White House, Monday, April 24, 2023 in Washington. President Biden announced 2024 reelection bid Tuesday.

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden on Tuesday formally announced that he is running for reelection in 2024, asking voters to give him more time to “finish the job” he began when he was sworn in to office and to set aside their concerns about extending the run of America’s oldest president for another four years.

Biden, who would be 86 at the end of a second term, is betting his first-term legislative achievements and more than 50 years of experience in Washington will count for more than concerns over his age. He faces a smooth path to winning his party’s nomination, with no serious Democratic rivals. But he’s still set for a hard-fought struggle to retain the presidency in a bitterly divided nation.

The announcement, in a three-minute video, comes on the four-year anniversary of when Biden declared for the White House in 2019, promising to heal the “soul of the nation” amid the turbulent presidency of Donald Trump — a goal that has remained elusive.

“I said we are in a battle for the soul of America, and we still are,” Biden said. “The question we are facing is whether in the years ahead we have more freedom or less freedom. More rights or fewer.”

While the question of seeking reelection has been a given for most modern presidents, that’s not always been the case for Biden, as a notable swath of Democratic voters have indicated they would prefer he not run, in part because of his age — concerns Biden has called “totally legitimate” but ones he did not address head-on in the launch video.

Yet few things have unified Democratic voters like the prospect of Trump returning to power. And Biden’s political standing within his party stabilized after Democrats notched a stronger-than-expected performance in last year’s midterm elections, as the president set out to run again on the same themes that buoyed his party last fall, particularly on preserving access to abortion.

“Freedom. Personal freedom is fundamental to who we are as Americans. There’s nothing more important. Nothing more sacred,” Biden said in the launch video, which painted the Republican Party as extremists trying to roll back access to abortion, cut Social Security, limit voting rights and ban books they disagree with. “Around the country, MAGA extremists are lining up to take those bedrock freedoms away.”

“This is not a time to be complacent,” Biden added. “That’s why I’m running for reelection.”

As the contours of the campaign begin to take shape, Biden plans to campaign on his record. He spent his first two years as president combating the coronavirus pandemic and pushing through major bills such as the bipartisan infrastructure package and legislation to promote high-tech manufacturing and climate measures. With Republicans now in control of the House, Biden has shifted his focus to implementing those massive laws and making sure voters credit him for the improvements, while sharpening the contrast with the GOP ahead of an expected showdown over raising the nation’s borrowing limit that could have debilitating consequences for the country’s economy.

But the president also has multiple policy goals and unmet promises from his first campaign that he’s pitching voters on giving him another chance to fulfill.

“Let’s finish this job. I know we can,” Biden said in the video, repeating a mantra he said a dozen times during his State of the Union address in February, listing everything from passing a ban on assault-style weapons and lowering the cost of prescription drugs to codifying a national right to abortion after the Supreme Court’s ruling last year overturning Roe v. Wade.

Buoyed by the midterm results, Biden plans to continue to cast all Republicans as embracing what he calls “ultra-MAGA” politics — a reference to Trump’s “Make America Great Again” slogan — regardless of whether his predecessor ends up on the 2024 ballot. He’s spent the last several months road-testing campaign themes, including painting Republicans as fighting for tax cuts for businesses and the wealthy while trying to cut social safety net benefits relied on by everyday Americans and roll back access to abortion services.

Biden, speaking over brief video clips and photographs of key moments in his presidency, snapshots of diverse Americans and flashes of his outspoken Republican foes, including Trump, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, and Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, exhorted supporters that “this is our moment” to “defend democracy. Stand up for our personal freedoms. Stand up for the right to vote and our civil rights.”

Biden also plans to point to his work over the past two years shoring up American alliances, leading a global coalition to support Ukraine’s defenses against Russia’s invasion and returning the U.S. to the Paris climate accord. But public support in the U.S. for Ukraine has softened in recent months, and some voters question the tens of billions of dollars in military and economic assistance flowing to Kyiv.

The president faces lingering criticism over his administration’s chaotic 2021 withdrawal from Afghanistan after nearly 20 years of war, which undercut the image of competence he aimed to portray to the world, and he finds himself the target of GOP attacks over his immigration and economic policies.

As a candidate in 2020, Biden pitched voters on his familiarity with the halls of power in Washington and his relationships around the world as he promised to return a sense of normalcy to the country amid Trump’s tumultuous presidency and the deadly COVID-19 pandemic.

But even back then, Biden was acutely aware of voters’ concerns about his age.

“Look, I view myself as a bridge, not as anything else,” Biden said in March 2020, as he campaigned in Michigan with younger Democrats, including now-Vice President Kamala Harris, Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey and Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. “There’s an entire generation of leaders you saw stand behind me. They are the future of this country.”

Three years later, the president now 80, Biden allies say his time in office has demonstrated that he saw himself as more of a transformational than a transitional leader.

Still, many Democrats would prefer that Biden didn’t run again. A recent poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research shows just 47% of Democrats say they want him to seek a second term, up from 37% in February. And Biden’s verbal — and occasional physical — stumbles have become fodder among the GOP, which has sought to cast him as unfit for office.

Biden, on multiple occasions, has brushed back concerns about his age, saying simply, “Watch me.”

During a routine physical in February, his physician, Dr. Kevin O’Connor, declared him “healthy, vigorous” and “fit” to handle his White House responsibilities.

Aides acknowledge that while some in his party might prefer an alternative to Biden, there is anything but consensus within their diverse coalition on who that might be. And they insist that when Biden is compared with whomever the GOP nominates, Democrats and independents will rally around Biden.

For now, the 76-year-old Trump is the favorite to emerge as the Republican nominee, creating the potential of a historic sequel to the bitterly fought 2020 campaign. But Trump faces significant hurdles of his own, including the designation of being the first former president to face criminal charges. The remaining GOP field is volatile, with DeSantis emerging as an early alternative to Trump. DeSantis’ stature is also in question, however, amid questions about his readiness to campaign outside of his increasingly Republican-leaning state.

To prevail again, Biden will need to revive the alliance of young voters and Black voters — particularly women — along with blue-collar Midwesterners, moderates and disaffected Republicans who helped him win in 2020. He’ll have to again carry the so-called “blue wall” in the Upper Midwest, while protecting his position in Georgia and Arizona, longtime GOP strongholds that he narrowly won in his last campaign.

Biden’s reelection bid comes as the nation weathers uncertain economic crosscurrents. Inflation is ticking down after hitting the highest rate in a generation, driving up the price of goods and services, but unemployment is at a 50-year low, and the economy is showing signs of resilience despite Federal Reserve interest rate hikes.

Presidents typically try to delay their reelection announcements to maintain the advantages of incumbency and skate above the political fray for as long as possible while their rivals trade jabs. But the leg up offered by being in the White House can be rickety — three of the last seven presidents have lost reelection, most recently Trump in 2020.

Biden’s announcement is roughly consistent with the timeline followed by then-President Barack Obama, who waited until April 2011 to declare for a second term. Trump launched his reelection bid on the day he was sworn in in 2017.

Biden is not expected to dramatically alter his day-to-day schedule as a candidate — at least not immediately — with aides believing his strongest political asset is showing the American people that he is governing. And if he follows the Obama playbook, he may not hold any formal campaign rallies until well into 2024. Obama didn’t hold a reelection rally until May 2012.

On Tuesday, Biden named White House adviser Julie Chávez Rodríguez to serve as campaign manager and Quentin Fulks, who ran Sen. Raphael Warnock’s reelection campaign in Georgia last year, to serve as principal deputy campaign manager. Reps. Lisa Blunt-Rochester, Jim Clyburn and Veronica Escobar; Sens. Chris Coons and Tammy Duckworth; entertainment mogul and Democratic mega-donor Jeffrey Katzenberg; and Whitmer will serve as campaign co-chairs.

On the heels of the announcement Tuesday, Biden was set to deliver remarks to union members before hosting South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol for a state visit at the White House. He plans to meet with party donors in Washington later this week.

Biden’s formal go-ahead comes after months of public incredulity that the president would seek another term despite plentiful signs that he was intent on doing so.

Ahead of the president’s announcement, first lady Jill Biden expressed disbelief at the persistent questions about her husband’s intent to run.

“How many times does he have to say it for you to believe it?” she told The Associated Press in late February. “He says he’s not done.”

AP Press

Categories
Nigeria Opinion Politics

WITH LOVE TO CHIEF EMMANUEL IWANYANWU, WE ARE SLOW TO ANGER BUT IRRESISTABLE IN BATTLE – FFK

PUSH NEWS 24 INTERNATIONAL : March 26th, 2023

WITH LOVE TO CHIEF EMMANUEL IWANYANWU

The fact that our reverred leader and one of the fathers of our nation, former President Olusegun Obasanjo, can sit there and say nothing when Chief (Dr.) Emmanuel Iwanyanwu, an elderstatesman who I have always respected, describes the entire Yoruba race as “rascals” that the Igbo “will DEAL with” tells me that the rumour that he is NOT a fully-fledged Yoruba man and that his father was an Igbo may well be true.

Whatever the case this is not the OBJ I once knew, loved, defended and worked so hard for. Something has gone wrong.

No-one could have made a statement against ANY tribe in the presence of the old OBJ that we all knew and respected and got away with it. He would have got up and told them off.

As for Iwanyanwu I will not respond to him or to all those that were at that event and that collectively rubbished our people because they are my in-laws and because my four sons are half Igbo.

There is nothing Iwanyawau can say that will make me turn against the Igbo because I have blood and family ties with them and I will continue to love them despite this outrageous provocation.

Apart from that there are millions of Igbos who do not share Iwanyanwu’s views and who have shown nothing but the greatest respect for the Yoruba race and our Northern brothers and allies.

Amongst them are dear friends and brothers like John Nwodo, Orji Uzor Kalu, Chimaroke Nnamani, Ifeanyi Ugwainyi, David Umahi, Hope Uzodinma, Innocent Chukwuma, Emeka Offor and so many others.

Iwanyanwu does not represent them when he calls us rascals and neither does he represent the wives of Seyi Makinde, Rotimi Akeredolu, Ademola Adeleke, Gbadebo ‘Chinedu’ Rhodes-Vivour, David Adedeji Adeleke (AKA Davido) and yours truly who all happen to be Igbo.

What I will say though is that those Igbos that think like Iwanyanwu need to be careful and appreciate the fact that those so-called “Yoruba rascals” have shown the Igbo race more love, respect, admiration, fraternity, solidarity and courtesy over the last 63 years than ANY other tribe in Nigeria and millions of Yoruba men have Igbo wives.

Again many Yoruba leaders stood with and supported Peter Obi in his ill-fated quest to become President of Nigeria including Pa Ayo Adebanjo, OBJ, Afenifere, Akin Oshuntokun, Gbadebo ‘Chinedu’ Rhodes-Vivour, Babatunde Gbadamosi and so many others. I wonder if they are “rascals” too?

We extended our hand for a handshake across the Niger a few years back and we built bridges with the east.

Chief Iwanyanwu, Ohaneze and Afenifere were at that conference and so was yours truly.

As a matter of fact we all made resounding and inspiring speeches seeking for a closer relationship and greater collaboration between our people.

It was a wonderful occasion and a great experience.

We were in full solidarity with the Igbo then and lamented the injustices they had been subjected to over the years.

I even went as far as to declare that Nigeria owes the Igbo an apology for the genocide they were subjected to during the civil war and the pogroms before the war. I maintain that position till today and so do many other Yorubas.

The only thing we asked for in return was a little respect and for them not to describe Lagos as a “no man’s land”. This is a very emotional issue for us. The assertion that Lagos is not part of Yorubaland is deeply offensive and insulting to us.

We also chose to support Bola Ahmed Tinubu, a proud son of the Yoruba, for the Presidency.

These two things have caused a handful of misguided Igbos to now display hatred towards us, to insult us at every turn, to unleash their youth against us in the Media space and to describe us as “rascals”.

With those words and that attitude the bridge between our two people may soon be broken and the handshake across the Niger may soon be withdrawn.

That would be a tragedy of monumental proportions and a negation of all we stand for. We must not let it happen.

We must be restrained and careful not to destroy the love and trust we have built over the years.

The Yoruba are not a people that can easily be insulted and we do not take such things lightly.

We are kind, welcoming, accomodating, civilised, generous, cosmopolitan, liberal and open-hearted to a fault.

We are also slow to anger but irresistible in battle.

We have long memories and when we choose to take a stand and fight it goes from generation to generation.

I pray Chief Iwanyanwu and those that share his views can cultivate the prescence of mind and courage to have a rethink before it is too late.

Millions of Igbos reside in and have their businesses in Lagos and we should preach love, peace and unity between our people and not resort to calling each other names or indulge in racial profiling or stereotyping.

We choose to overlook what Chief Iwanyanwu has said this time and look the other way but it must NEVER happen again.

A word is enough for the wise.

(FFK)