Bola Tinubu, National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), on Monday described Senate President Bukola Saraki with some unpalatable words.
Speaking at the APC presidential rally in Ilorin, Kwara State, Tinubu, in Yoruba language loosely translated to English, said Saraki had been stealing from his people and betraying them for his own selfish interests.
“He is a traitor… someone who takes his people’s belongings and sells them off,” Tinubu said. “He is self-centred. Bukola Saraki is the one I’m talking about. He can’t beat you, or will he?”
Tinubu said he was earnestly looking forward to the 2019 elections, saying: “I know, this is the celebration of your freedom; this is the celebration of the falling of the berlin wall. This is the celebration of the end to oligarchy…”
After Ilorin, the APC campaign train moved to Abeokuta, capital of Ogun State, for a rally that turned out the most dramatic so far since the campaign started touring the country last month.
Governor Samuel Ortom Accuses INEC Of Colluding With APC To Shift Polls » Lifestylenaija | Breaking Celebrity Gist | Lifestyle | Entertainments
he Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, has accused the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) of colluding with the All Progressive Congress to postpone the general elections.
Ortom made the allegation on Saturday in Makurdi, in an exclusive interview with Channels Television.
“How can you just justify that for three good years you planned for an election to be held. If there are logistics issues as alleged by the (INEC) Chairman, why did it take him to the last hour to announce a postponement in an arbitrary manner?” he questioned.
According to the governor, the electoral body acted based on a petition it allegedly received, stressing that the rescheduling of the elections was done deliberately.
Ortom further stated that the masses are tired of what he described as the deceit of the APC-led Federal Government, saying it has brought untold hardship on Nigerians.
“Just about two days ago, they wrote a petition urging them to postpone the election. It is not an afterthought thing. It was a deliberate plan orchestrated by the APC to make Nigerians suffer more because they know the fate of Nigerians.
“But I want to tell them that it is a matter of postponing the evil day. It will definitely come against them because Nigerians are fed up with this deceit,” he added.
The governor’s reaction comes few hours after INEC postponed the general elections by a week.
According to the Commission, the Presidential and National Assembly elections, initially scheduled for today, February 16, will now hold on February 23, while the governorship and state houses of assembly elections will take place on March 9.
INEC Chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu, announced the decision at a short press briefing at 2:44 am on Saturday.
President Buhari Arrives In Abuja From Daura » Lifestylenaija | Breaking Celebrity Gist | Lifestyle | Entertainments
President Muhammadu Buhari has arrived in Abuja after departing his country home in Daura, Katsina State, where he had gone to cast his vote in the Presidential and National Assembly elections which were moved by INEC.
The President left for Abuja sometime in the mid-day on Saturday.
This was made known by his Personal Assistant on New Media, Bashir Ahmad, via his verified Twitter handle, @BashirAhmaad, on Saturday.
The President said he was heading back to Abuja to ensure that an INEC meeting with stakeholders scheduled for 2pm, was successful.
Earlier in the day, President Buhari had said that he was deeply disappointed with the postponement of the general elections by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The President said this on Saturday in a statement issued by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu.
He said, “I am deeply disappointed that despite the long notice given and our preparations both locally and internationally the INEC postponed the Presidential and National Assembly elections within hours of its commitment”.
The President lamented that many Nigerians had travelled far and wide from various locations to exercise their franchise likewise the international observers.
“Many Nigerians have travelled to various locations to exercise their rights to vote and international observers have gathered.
“INEC themselves have given assurances, day after day and almost hour after hour, that they are in complete readiness for the elections. We and all our citizens believed them,” he said.
The President, however, disclosed that his administration will not interfere in the processes of the Commission but will rather ensure that all funds are released.
Confirmed: Facebook Allowed Fake News Ads Ahead Of Nigeria’s Elections » Lifestylenaija | Breaking Celebrity Gist | Lifestyle | Entertainments
In January 2019, Facebook said it would place a temporary ban on political ads related to the 2019 elections in the country, basing its decision on the need to discourage foreign influence in the electoral process.
A Facebook statement issued that month to the effect read: “Earlier this month in Nigeria, we began temporarily disallowing electoral ads purchased from outside the country ahead of the election and will implement the same policy in Ukraine ahead of their election. Advertisers will need to be authorized to purchase political ads; we’ll give people more information about ads related to politics and issues; and we’ll create a publicly searchable library of these ads for up to seven years.”
However, according to an investigation by Al Jazeera, even false political ads can find their way into the social media space, as the automated ad approval system can be easily tricked to some level.
Al Jazeera placed some ads on Facebook, containing false claims, which were eventually approved. One of the claims was that Boko Haram would take part in the elections. The ads were estimated by Facebook’s system to possibly reach between seven and 17 million people.
Among the claims were that US President Donald Trump supported Atiku Abubakar, presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP); that the deadline for collection of Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) was extended by one week; and that refugees would get a voting extension after February 16.
After slight changes were made to trick the Facebook automated ad system, all four false claims were approved. However, the one on refugees was eventually taken down.
The ads were, however, deactivated by Al Jazeera before they ran on the platform and the website where the news stories were posted was hidden from the public to ensure the stories were not visible to search engines.
Speaking on the development, Herman Wasserman, Professor of Media Studies at the University of Cape Town, said: “This is worrying. One would like to see Facebook doing more to fact-check claims in political advertising during a political campaign period. The evidence seems to suggest that their system does not work as effectively as it should.”
To buy ads on Facebook, users have to go through Facebook’s Ad Manager, an automated system that not only allows users to focus their advertisements on a very specific audience, but also approves ads before publication. Any of the four ads by Al Jazeera should have been disallowed, since they were placed from Qatar and Facebook had announced that it would not allow users to buy political ads from outside Nigeria.
Speaking on its commitment to discouraging fake ads, a Facebook official said the comoany “is committed to fighting the spread of false news on Facebook, and protecting election integrity”, but that “there is no silver bullet to this issue”.
Facebook said preventing such adds from its space “requires a multi-pronged approach”, noting that several solutions had been implemented, including teaming up with local third-party fact-checkers, rolling out educational tips on national and regional media across Nigeria, and introducing new options in English and Hausa so people can report posts that contain incorrect election information, encourage violence or otherwise violate its Community Standards.
“Although false news does not in and of itself violate our Community Standards, it often violates our policies in other categories, which can lead to removal, as occurred here,” Facebook told Al Jazeera.
“The majority of these ads were rejected for policy violations and never appeared on Facebook. The small number that were approved were paused before they went live and likely would have received limited to zero distribution on Facebook as a result of additional violations of our advertising policies.
“While we have made good progress, we recognise there is always more we can do because the threats we face keep evolving – but we’ll continue to work on improving our systems and technology to prevent abuse.”
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