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4 - 2 - 2019
This is Zikoko's Game of Votes Weekly Dispatch. We share the most important things leading up to the 2019 General Elections, and why they matter. 5pm. Every Monday. Stay woke. 

And a baby got ₦2 million for being born at an APC rally. Middle-age is a scam.


a.            Effed up b. All the way effed up c. Completely and utterly, effed up.

Either answer is correct, and if you picked all 3, that’s okay. Because our commander-in-chief and his campaign team were moving especially mad this week. Let’s review shall we:

He Threw Up All Over His Anti-Corruption Stance.
On January 31,President Buhari pretty much set his comatose, anti-corruption campaign on fire.
While attending a Next Level rally in Kano State, he raised the sticky-fingered hand of Abdullahi Ganduje — of Gandollars fame — in unmistakable solidarity. Both parties are currently seeking re-election (sadly), and the performance was to pander to the  5,457,747 registered voters in the state, whose numbers are — fun fact: second only to Lagos’  6,570,291. Shocker.
Now, I’m no expert, but avoiding fraternizing with known corrupt officials, while running a campaign primarily premised on anti-corruption, is a no-brainer right? Well, tell that to Bubs. He rationalised his actions in a statement, emphasising Ganduje’s immunity and  innocence until proven guilty. This is despite there being no trial to speak of, as a court ordered the convenient halt of the investigation into the Gandollars affair. Just wondering where this ethical energy was when the CJN was suspended, despite his trial being in progress.

His VP Took Being A Team-Player To the #NextLevel. 

On Feb. 2, tragedy was thankfully averted when the VP- Yemi Osibanjo and his crew escaped unhurt, after a helicopter transporting them, crash landed in Kogi State. Now I don’t know what kind of strict boot-camp they’re running over at the APC, but instead of taking a day off or 332 (like I would have) to re-coup and overcome the shock of a near-death experience, our VP went straight to campaigning as he originally intended.
No news is out as to what caused the crash, but we do hope the VP feels better and gets the rest he needs. Now is not the time to dust yourself off and try again.

His Campaign Threw The Border Floodgates Open.

For reasons that are yet to sound plausible, two Niger governors - Governor Issa Moussa of Zinder and Governor Governor Zakari Umar of Maradi — were present at the APC rally held in Kano State.
Perhaps the APC is unfamiliar with the concept of optics, but having 2 governors of a country whose people have long been feared to act as mercenaries interfering with the country’s elections; present at a party rally is not the best way to inspire confidence in the upcoming elections.

He Forgot The Last 4 Years, And Yet ANother Person's Identity.




INEC, speaking through its Resident Electoral Commissioner in Kwara - Malam Garba Attahiru- Madami, has expressed growing concern over the dismal amount of women participating in Nigerian politics. As of 2017, Nigerian women made up 5.60% of the national parliament. A mere drop in the water.

These 7 Women Running For Governor In Lagos Are Helping Though.

A total of 7 women will be for the position of Lagos state governor in the 2019 elections. These are: Asisat Abdulraheem of the African Peoples Alliance (APA); Patience Omeebere of the Allied Peoples Movement (APM) and Abiola Adeyemi of the Democratic Peoples Congress (DPC), Pauline Adegbe of the Progressive Peoples Alliance (PPA); Omolara Adesanya of the Providence Peoples Congress (PPC); Oluwatoyin Ogunbambi of the Peoples Trust (PT) and Adebisi Ogunsanya of the Young Progressives Party (YPP). Their number sounds promising until you consider they are makeup only a sixth of the 45 candidates running for governor. Still a ton of work to be done for this inclusivity guys!
To know every female candidate running for office, make sure to check out this great website compiled by Zahra, which compiles the over 700 female candidates running for office in Nigeria.


On January 31, Eunice Atuejide, who is apparently still in the running for president, despite her party’s best efforts, hit send on a pretty damning tweet against her candidacy. Reacting to Atiku’s performance at The Candidates — Eunice, completely blown away — admitted in an emoji-laden tweet, that she might be the first candidate to not vote for their candidacy. She took it up a notch and offered to campaign for Atiku’s candidacy.
Now, this may have had some shock-value, pre-Ezekwesili’s departure and prior to Durotoye showing openness to form a coalition. But a candidate offering to defeat the APC by supporting a stronger candidate? Been there, done that.

At Least Her Lawyer Is Eating Good This Period.

Pretty much everyone! I mean who would pass up a chance to drag their opponents and tell the country how they plan to take it from 0–100? Oh wait, there might be a little renegade. Remember how Buhari was swaggy as hell back in 2015, winning the elections without partaking in debates? Well, maybe he can be two-times lucky. Do you want to bet?




On January 28th, the Lagos State House of Assembly threatened to impeach Governor Ambode over offences bordering on gross misconduct and racking up a bill on the yet to be presented 2019 state budget.
As it stands, I might be more worried about this potential impeachment than Ambo himself. He
appears to have made Buhari’s victory in the elections, his sole resolution for the new year. Ambode, who btw  —  still has a state to run, has followed the Next Level train everywhere from Abuja to Benin,Kaduna,Kebbi,Anambra,Enugu and Oyo States, all in January.
The news of his likely impeachment wasn’t enough to stop him from being front and center in Kano state with the prez, just 3 days after the news. Guess when Ambo shows support, he goes very hard. For peace of mind, that’s the reason I’m going to accept for Ambode having Buhari on his Twitter header. Otherwise…

'Tis The Season For Defections.

The PDP did not have the best week. First, they had that terrible, but hard to not laugh at, stage collapse in Kebbi. Then they were hit with the news of 5000 of their members in Kebbi state, leaving to join the APC. If that wasn’t enough, another 2509 members defected to the APC in Katsina. Topping the table, the APC received with welcome hands, a former PDP financial secretary - Mr Bolaji Anani, into their fold, ahead of the 2019 elections.


Presidential Powers of Appointment and Removal of The Chief Justice of Nigeria.
With the drama surrounding the (backburner?) CJN- Walter Onnoghen, now would be a good time to discuss the powers/functions of the government in relation to the Chief judicial officer of the state.
As President, the Commander-in-Chief is empowered by the Constitution-(which is only the  most important and powerful piece of this country’s legislation, just FYI) to appoint the Chief Justice. This is ONLY on the National Judicial Council’s recommendation, subject to a ⅔ majority support of the senate.
On removal, the President is empowered to ex the CJN, following a recommendation by the NJC, and a ⅔ majority  support of the Senate.
On the president’s powers of suspension however — *crickets*. See, the Constitution reserves the disciplinary powers of the CJN on the National Judicial Council only, as seen in Paragraph 21 of Part One of the Third Schedule to the 1999 Constitution. Therefore, the President has no powers to do so, random court orders or no.


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