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How another candidate died two days after Abia PDP flagbearer

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Less than 48 hours after the death of Uche Ikonne, governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), was announce, Nigeria’s political space, has again been hit with the news of the death of Alhaji Aliyu Maina, governorship candidate of the National Rescue Movement (NRM) in Adamawa State.

Maina’s death, which is also coming barely six weeks to the march 11, 2023 gubernatorial election, was announced by the NRM National Publicity Secretary, Olusola Afuye.

He said: “According to the statement from the family, the late Alhaji Abba Maina died on Wednesday, January 25 at his residence in Federal Capital Territory, Abuja after a brief illness.

“He has been buried according to Muslim rites. We pray to almighty Allah to protect his family and all his loved ones.”

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BREAKING: Umar-Farouq beats ultimatum, finally at EFCC *To undergo grilling over N37billion ‘fraud’

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After days of dilly-dallying, back and forth, and finally an ultimatum, Sadiya Umar-Farouq, former Minister of Social Development, Disaster Management, and Humanitarian Affairs, on Monday, finally took the hot seat at the Jabi headquarters of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), in Abuja to tell operatives how some whopping amounts public money under her care suddenly developed wings.

The former Minister, whose name featured prominently in the later years of former President Muhammadu Buhari, for many wrong reasons, is being investigated over one of the many allegations levied against her, this time the handsome figure of N37,170,855,753.44, which was purportedly laundered when she was in charge through a contractor named James Okwete.

“I have, at my behest, arrived at the headquarters of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to honour the invitation by the anti-graft agency to offer clarifications in respect of some issues that the commission is investigating,” she wrote on her X handle.

After she failed to appear at the same office on Wednesday, on the ground of what her lawyers indicated was due to ill-health, she was eventually issued with a 72-hour ultimatum by the anti-graft agency to appear or be declared wanted, a deadline she had now beaten by showing up.

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Go girl! Tinubu gushes, as Akindele’s blockbuster move grosses record N1billion

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“The creative industry is one of the high-employment sectors, providing jobs for our able and talented youths. It is an industry that is crucial to my administration. I salute Nigerians for their enduring support and patronage of home-grown creative efforts. We will provide the conducive environment for the industry to thrive further,” were the words with which President Bola Tinubu on Friday, gushed at the news of the huge success just recorded by ace Nigerian artist, Funke Akindele, with her movie: A Tribe Called Judah.

Two weeks after its debut, the movie, said to have been produced and co-directed by Akindele, herself an A-list Nollywood actress with many awards to her name, reportedly grossed over N1 billion, after it was released to Nigerian cinemas, mid-December, becoming the highest-earning Nigerian movie ever.

Tinubu, who conveyed his excitement through Ajuri Ngelale, his spokesman, celebrating  the ingenuity, creativity, and immense artistic talents of Nigeria’s thriving entertainment industry, congratulated not only for the record-setting film, but commended her contributions to the growth of the industry, as a whole.

He extolled the excellence of the Nigerian creative industry, acknowledging its pivotal place as a medium, not only for artistic expression but also a source of enormous soft power and viable export.

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The Nollywood diva, had broken the news herself through her Instagram page, on Friday, enthusing on the movie, which hit cinemas on December 15, 2023, first breaking the record of grossing over N133m in its opening weekend, stating: “Thank You LORD!!!, Thank NIGERIA!!, Thank you GHANA!!”

The movie, which became the highest-grossing Nollywood film for the year 2023 after grossing over N613m within the first 14 days of its release, had also made history on January 2, as it emerged as the highest-grossing Nollywood film ever with a reported N854million at the box office within 18 days in cinemas, surpassing previous attempts, such as Battle on Buka Street (N668.4million), and Omo Ghetto (N636.1m) which currently sit as the second and third highest-grossing films at the Nigerian box office respectively.

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Stormy Rivers! Fubara moves quickly, summons council meeting

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In an apparent riposte to the defection of 27 pro-Nyesom Wike state lawmakers intent on removing him from office, Rivers Governor Siminalayi Fubara is said to be currently meeting with the members of the state executive council, at the Government House in Port Harcourt, the state capital.

This was after the 27 members of the 32-member House of Assembly, who had started their onslaught last month with a move to impeach him, dug in, in a fresh move by announcing their defection from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC), during the sitting of the House.

Though the lawmakers, who were seen brandishing the flags of the APC in a group photograph after the sitting, said in their individual letters addressed to Martin Chike Amaewhule, their factional Speaker that their decision to defect was due to the ongoing tussle for the position of the National Secretary of the PDP, political watchers believe the move is part of the grand finale to their plans to oust the governor.

Outside the meeting, which is still going on as at the time of filing this report, the governor is said to have also activated other structures in the state, including the political machinery that has sustained the PDP, which has been in power in the state since 1999, in addition to seeking the support of the elders and leaders of thoughts in the state, to stem the tide against him.

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