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Lockdown: PRP Suggests New Strategies, Warns Government Against Extension

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The Peoples Redemption Party (PRP) has suggested some strategies to federal and state governments on how to tackle the Coronavirus pandemic.

The party also called on the government at all levels not to extend the ongoing lockdown.

The party made this known in a press statement signed by the party’s National Chairman, Alhaji Falalu Bello, OFR and made available to newsmen Monday in Abuja.

“At the expense of repeating ourselves, we in the Peoples Redemption Party (PRP) would want to again say that the continued lockdowns being ordered by Governments in Nigeria are not and would not in themselves be solutions to the Covid-19 pandemic. Even where we copied the lockdown strategy from, the Western world with all their sophistication and resources, they use lockdowns along with other strategies to achieve results. The continuous increase in the Covid-19 infections since lockdowns were ordered by some Government show that lockdowns have not prevented community infections. The increase in infections despite the lockdowns should inform our policy makers that lockdowns with attendant economic costs, are not working and need serious re-examination.

“Social distancing which lockdowns bring in the Western societies as well as elite settlements like Ikoyi Lagos, Anguwan Rimi Kaduna, Asokoro Abuja, as we have said in our earlier Press releases will not work in our towns and cities where over 90% of Nigerian population live. In such settings, tens of families stay in “face me I face you” rooms with one or two toilets and at times no running water. That is our reality which informed our stand in earlier press engagements.” The statement said.

The party further recommended making testing available to all and fair distribution of palliatives. It also stated that there is absence of meaningful exit strategy of the lockdown.

“We have pointed out in our earlier press releases that the lockdowns have some serious economic consequences. In the extension speeches we have so far heard,all we hear are extensions of the lockdowns as well the serious consequences of disobeying the orders with no mention at all of the exit strategies of the lockdowns.

“Yes, it is excusable out of panic to order for lockdowns on the assumption that it is the only way-out but it is inexcusable for Governments to lock down the economy for months now without examining the consequences of such lockdowns and how to ameliorate the consequences of such locdowns on our businesses: big and small. Small and Medium sized businesses are already dying because of the lockdown and agriculture which is the main stay of the economy and the biggest contributor to the Nigerian Gross Domestic Product is likely to suffer serious negative consequences, yet all the speeches we hear or read are just muscle flexing and show of power, lacking of how the economy will be revived.

“Mr President has ordered for emptying of the grains strategic reserve and the population itself is eating its reserve of 2019 production. The question here is how do we replenish the reserves we are eating when planting season has come and lockdown extension are being ordered? Agriculture in Nigeria is almost exclusively rain fed and the rains have started and plantings have not started and no one has come out to tell the nation how it will overcome this challenge as the concern of all is we should stay indoors.

“The Covid-19 strategies we have copied and pasted have exit strategies from their lockdowns so as to reduce the extent of the damage on their economies. Here, we have simply copied the lockdown strategies and abandoned how to exit from lockdown and its negative consequences on our economies.” The party added.

PRP has finally declared that if their views in respect of the lockdown are not considered, the party has no option but to approach court to know whether governments have the right to lock citizens up without feeding them.

“we urge that our three views be taken into account in rewriting the Covid-19 pandemic strategy which need urgent rewriting for the benefit of Nigerian Talaka and in the interest of Nigerian economy. As for providing sustenance to those locked up, we demand for such or else we will meet with all those tyrants that lock our citizens up without sustenance.

“Notwithstanding the futility of lockdowns as a solution to Covid-19 pandemic as opined by the PRP and some informed commentators, our Governments and policy makers are still insisting on that policy with greater draconian enforcement rules as we saw recently.” PRP said.

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Bauchi PRP elects Bar Ahmed Gwadabe new State Chairman, affirms loyalty to Falalu Bello

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The Bauchi State Chapter of the Peoples Redemption Party (PRP) has elected Barrister Ahmed Umar Farouq Gwadabe as the new State Chairman of the party following the exit of Alhaji Shehu Barau Ningi who defected to APC.

The state chapter of the party also reiterated its satisfaction and confidence in the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party under the National Chairmanship of Alhaji Falalu Bello, OFR for repositioning and taking the party to greater heights.

These were contained in a communiqué signed by 11 members of the State Executive Committee including the State Vice Chairman, Ibrahim Sambo, and released to newsmen after a meeting held on Friday in Bauchi.

The communiqué explained that 11 out of 16 members of the State Executive Committee voted in favour of Barrister Ahmed Umar Farouq Gwadabe.

Part of the communiqué reads: “After comprehensive and fruitful deliberations on all the issues tabled before the meeting, the members of the State Executive Committee have resolved as follows:

“That the State Executive Committee has accepted the resignation of the former Chairman of the party in person of Alhaji Shehu Barau Ningi from the position of Bauchi State Chairmanship of the party and wished him success in his future endeavors.

“That the State Executive Committee has appointed Barrister Ahmed Umar Farouq Gwadabe as the new State Chairman of the party pending convention.

“That the State Executive Committee of the party, on behalf of the Bauchi State Chapter of the party, has reaffirmed its loyalty, satisfaction and confidence in the leadership of the Party’s National Executive Committee [NEC] under the Chairmanship of Alh. Falalu Bello for repositioning and taking the party to greater heights.”

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Failure of governance begets youth unrest, says PRP

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The Peoples Redemption Party (PRP) has disclosed that the ongoing youth unrest is an expression of failure of governance.

This was contained in a statement signed by the party’s National Chairman, Alhaji Falalu Bello and made available to newsmen on Thursday.

The full statement reads, “For about two weeks now the streets of our cities have become ungovernable spaces occupied by rival gangs of young (and not so young) men and women protesting against one aspect or another of the actions and in-actions of governments. A discontent which started initially on social media as a protest against police brutality has now snowballed into peaceful – and not-so-peaceful – agitations against a myriad of issues ranging from demands for the abolition of the notoriously brutal Special Anti-robbery Squad (SARS) of the Police Force to issues of Restructuring, Electoral Reforms and even hoisting of pro market economic policies on Nigerian Population and lately the resignation from office of President Muhammadu Buhari.

“The largely nonplus and incompetent handling of the agitation by the Government has not helped matters. The decision to succumb to the pressure mounted by the protestors by agreeing to scrap SARS only to immediately replace it with a so-called SWAT not only demonstrated official duplicity but the Government’s lack of faith. Similarly, President Buhari’s failure to come out openly to address the nation on the specific demands made by the protesting youth has only demonstrated the absence of any articulate or coherent response to the challenges posed by the young men and women demanding for greater accountability from the present political leadership. In the circumstances, the latest attempted violent clampdown by the authorities (which include the imposition of curfews, and the sponsoring of rival gangs of pro-government thugs, etc.) can only worsen an already very dicey situation.

“One fact is critically clear in all the chaos, destruction and blood-letting that has attended the ongoing dissent of the youth. The upheaval is a direct consequence of the utter failure of governance in the country – a failure which may not have originated with the present APC Administration, but which this Administration has undoubtedly done little or nothing to assuage; and which, in many instances, it has even worsened. This is as true of the worsening insecurity in the country as it is of the increasing poverty, unemployment, crime and infrastructural decay, to mention just a few.

“The PRP does not believe that the present APC Administration, or even the ruling class of which it is part and parcel of, has what it takes or even the will or credibility, to assuage or mollify the legitimate anger of our protesting young citizens. However, there is need to do something in the interim to calm down frayed nerves and to prevent the agitations from degenerating into ethnic, religious and regional mayhem and antagonisms along the traditional fault lines of Nigeria prebendal elite politics. Some of the measures that Government must consider taking immediately with a view to calming down the frayed nerves of our agitated youth must include the formal inauguration of a Marshall Plan-like programme that would provide employment for our youth, a declaration of a State-of-Emergency in the education, skills acquisition and manpower development sectors with guaranteed increased funding, and the initiation of a short and medium-term massive public works programme, particularly in the provision and rehabilitation of infrastructural facilities and social services at both federal and state government levels. Some of the massive foreign loans being acquired by Government should be devoted to these projects.

“What we are asking for may be a tall order for the current Administration in this country but we nonetheless say it as there seems to us no other rational or reasonable way out!”

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PRP Board of Trustees Expresses Confidence In Falalu Bello-Led Exco

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The Board of Trustees (BOT) of the Peoples Redemption Party (PRP) has passed a vote of confidence on the party’s National Executives led by Alhaji Falalu Bello, OFR.

The members of the board made this known in a communiqué issued at the end of their meeting in Abuja on Thursday.

The communiqué, which had the signatures of former Minister of Commerce, Engr. Mustapha Bello, Dr. Segun Falope, Engr. Chris Onyeodizuchu, Alhaji Aji Mala, among others, revealed that the meeting was specifically summoned to consider urgent current developments within the party.

Part of the communiqué further reads: “After exhaustive, frank and fruitful deliberations on all the issues tabled before the meeting, the members of the BOT have resolved as follows:

“To express and convey the PRP BOT’s absolute confidence in, and satisfaction with, the leadership of the Party’s National Executive Committee [NEC] under the Chairmanship of Alh. Falalu Bello and with its strenuous and focused efforts at repositioning the PRP for greater relevance and impact in the Nigerian political space.

“To unreservedly endorse the Programmes of Action approved and rolled out by both the National Executive Committee [NEC] and National Working Committee [NWC] of the PRP covering the period August 2020 August 2021 which will culminate with the holding of the Party’s National Convention.

“To condemn in clear and unmistaken terms attempts by a few misguided and errant elements within the Party to create dissent, misunderstandings and factions within the PRP, noting in particular that this is contrary to the letter and spirit of the Party’s extant constitutional provisions and Code of Conduct for members which explicitly frown at all anti-Party activities and conduct likely to embarrass the Party or bring the Party into hatred, contempt, ridicule or disrepute.”

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