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3rd term: Obasanjo group perfects fresh plot

Posted by By ISMAIL OMIPIDAN, Abuja on 2006/03/07 | Views: 714 |

3rd term: Obasanjo group perfects fresh plot


As the National Assembly Joint Constitution Review Committee (JCRC) moves to Port Harcourt this week to harmonize the reports collated from the six geo-political zones of the country during the just concluded public hearing on the review of the constitution, proponents of the third term agenda have again drawn up a fall-back plan in case the third term issue fails.

As the National Assembly Joint Constitution Review Committee (JCRC) moves to Port Harcourt this week to harmonize the reports collated from the six geo-political zones of the country during the just concluded public hearing on the review of the constitution, proponents of the third term agenda have again drawn up a fall-back plan in case the third term issue fails.

According to Daily Sunís dependable sources, the pro-third term campaigners are now toying with the possibility of retaining the present two terms of four years and making the amended constitution to take effect from this year, thereby making Obasanjo eligible to another shot at the Presidency in 2007.
Daily Sun gathered that third term proponents met last Friday from 9p.m to 12.30a.m, to conclude their latest plan.

The meeting had in attendance President Olusegun Obasanjo. Chairman, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Board of Trustees, Chief Tony Anenih and governors of Bauchi, Delta, Edo, Enugu, Kaduna, Katsina, Kogi, Kwara, Nasarawa, Ondo, Taraba and Yobe states. Also in attendance were the sub-committee chairmen of the JCRC for the six zones.

Participants, it was gathered, took turns to present their reports. They reported that North-East and the North-West voted overwhelmingly against the third term agenda, while South-West and South-South voted enmasse for it. They also reported that there was a stalemate over the issue in South-East and North Central zones.

The pro-third term group were said to have mapped out strategies on how to achieve its game plan.
At first, the meeting proposed that the governors should fund the third term project, but the governors were said to have turned down the request, using the searchlight of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) as exuse. To this end, the Senior Special Assistant to President Obasanjo, Andy Uba and the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Engineer Funsho Kupolokun, were mandated to raise N250 million each from oil contractors and traders.

South-South and South-East
To ensure that the people of the South-East zone support the third term project, the meeting agreed to grant its long and persistent agitation for the creation of a new state in the zone. This, in the thinking of the pro-third term group, would calm frayed nerves in the zone.
The meeting also agreed to review the derivation formula upward from 13 per cent to 25 percent for the South-South people.

The request by the governors from the zone to make it 50 percent was turned down. Incidentally, the northern governors present at the meeting were indifferent to the request made by their counterparts from the South-South and subsequent approval of 25 per cent granted them by the meeting, despite the fact that the northern governors had lost the on shore and off shore suit.

Items for amendment
The meeting asked that the initial 100 issues listed for amendment be reduced to either 15 or 16, while proposing a life immunity for President Obasanjo. The Vice President and the governors are to be stripped of their immunities. The thinking of the meeting is to ensure that even when Obasanjo leaves office, no government can call him for questioning.

Tony Anenih
Chief Tony Anenih has been named the new arrow-head of the third term group, with Senator Ibrahim Mantu and Andy Uba playing supportive roles.

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Fay(Katy, Texas, US)says...

Actually translates to bravehearted.