Showing posts with label muhammadu buhari. Show all posts
Showing posts with label muhammadu buhari. Show all posts

Monday, 16 April 2018

You’ve Failed Nigerians – Bakare Tells Buhari, Jonathan

The General Overseer of Latter Rain Assembly, Pastor Tunde Bakare, has described Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari and his predecessor Goodluck Jonathan as failures over their inability to prioritise the security and welfare of Nigerians.

The cleric stated this when he spoke at the 2nd annual Chibok girls lecture organised by the Bring Back Our Girls (BBOG) movement in Abuja, on Saturday, April 14, 2018.

Bakare said that the nation has failed to live up to the expectations in terms of security and welfare of the abducted school girls.

“That is the purpose of government as enshrined in the constitution. That the welfare and security of the citizens, whether is Jonathan government or Buhari government. Any government that does not prioritise the security and welfare of its people is already a failed government to start with.”

He said the fact that schoolgirls were abducted in Dapchi, Yobe state, four years after the Chibok incident is “evidence of an anomie and alarming national malady”.

The cleric wondered why both incidents happened the year preceding a general election.

“There is something wrong when a nation is twice beaten. There is something undeniably wrong when the girl child repeatedly becomes the bargaining instrument in negotiation deals between the government and terrorists,” Bakare said.

“Let me ask this question, has this government handled the issue of the Chibok kidnap well?” the audience chorused, “No!”

He asked again, “What of the previous government?” The people responded negatively, and Bakare continued: “Sometime ago, the daughter of President Buhari got married here in Abuja. Just recently, the daughter of Vice-President Osinbajo also got married here.

“The other time a governor gave out his daughter to another governor and they had a very elaborate wedding. Now tell me if their daughters were among the Chibok girls, won’t they have done enough to rescue them?
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Saturday, 3 February 2018

Forget Social Media Noise, Buhari Is Unbeatable — El Rufai

President Muhammadu Buhari remains electorally unbeatable with his attachment to the people unwavering, despite recriminations by the elite class on social and conventional media, Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State has said.

Affirming the president’s electoral invincibility, El-Rufai in an interview on Channels Television said:

“I do not have any doubt in my mind that we are going to win the next elections; not only in the centre but we are going to preserve our 24 states, and even more,” he said.

Insisting that the president remained popular despite insinuations to the contrary in conventional and social media platforms, the governor said:

“We are not saying this foolishly; this is scientific. We are monitoring the pulse of Nigerians, not the pulse of a section of Nigerians and I am confident that we are going to win the 2019 elections.”

“We know the pulse of the nation, we know where we are losing support, we know where we are gaining support; I have no doubt in my mind that we are going to win the 2019 elections.”

“There are two pulses of Nigerians – there is the pulse of the Nigerian elites which is the noise that you hear in the media, the social media and so on; then there is the pulse of the people.”

“If you remember how many people came out to welcome President Buhari in Kano, then you will know that there are two Nigerias.“
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President Buhari Deserves A Second Term – Patrick Obahiagbon

Former Member of the House of Representatives, Hon. Patrick Obahiagbon has joined voices with those calling for President Muhammadu Buhari’s second term noting that the All Progressives Congress (APC)-led administration has performed well enough to deserve a second term.

The APC Chieftain said this on Friday when he appeared as a guest on Channels Television as he reacted to the critical public statement recently written by the former President Olusegun Obasanjo to President Buhari, Obahiagbon disagreed with some of the points raised by Obasanjo and scored President Buhari high.

He, however, pointed out that the APC administration has not achieved all promised, saying it is not ‘eureka yet.’


“It is certainly not Eureka yet. But, the truth of the matter is that, given where we are coming from, this government has tried. We were in the cause of economic comatose and from the quagmire of recession, the government of President Muhammadu Buhari has been able to remove the economy from the jugulars of recession and has breathed vital life into Nigeria’s economy.”

He said further that President Buhari and the APC government has discharged their constitutional mandate “in such a way and manner that they deserve a second term outing.”
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Thursday, 1 February 2018

Finally! President Buhari Writes Senate, Lists Efforts To End Killings

President Muhammadu Buhari has written to the Senate to explain the efforts so far made by him to end the killings by suspected herdsmen in Benue State.

In a letter read by the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, on Wednesday, Mr. Buhari said the federal government was initiating measures to address the killings and other security challenges, alleviate their consequences and forestall reoccurrence.

The letter reads, “I thank you for your letter referenced NASS/8S/R/01/33 dated 18th January 2018 and carefully studied the resolutions and comments therein. As I briefed you and the RT. Hon speaker when we met, several courses of action have been taken prior to the Senate resolution.

“You may recall that I told you of the following steps taken as soon as the information came to me about the Benue killings.

“One, on Thursday 4th January, I sent the minister of interior and the deputy inspector-general of police in charge of operations for an on-the-spot assessment of the situation. Two, on Friday 5th January, the inspector-general of police briefed me verbally on the latest situation, calm had then been restored.

“Three, on Monday 8th, the minister of interior met with the following, governors of Adamawa, Kaduna, Niger, Benue Taraba and Nasarawa together with the DG of the State Security Services, inspector-general of police, CG civil defence, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development and police commissioner of the six aforementioned states.

“After the meeting, I instructed the Minister of Interior to brief you on the information gathered so far and steps are taken.

“On Tuesday, 9th of January, at a session with Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue state during which in informed of police arrests of some suspects. In addition, I told him that I have instructed to speed up the trial of the suspects and give wide publicity to the police efforts.

“At the instance of the governor, a meeting was held in the presidential villa on 15th with a wide cross-section of Benue personalities and frank and open discussions were held. Everybody appreciated the difficulties of this farmers-herders strife. I assured all of my commitment and assured justice would be done.

“To infer therefore that nothing has been done is incorrect. The police are strenuously working to apprehend the rest of the culprits of these heartless killings.

“Furthermore, I have instructed the IGP to relocate to Benue state and redeploy forces to the most sensitive towns. The federal government is initiating measures to address these and other security challenges, alleviate the consequence of these attacks and forestall reoccurrence. The Senate resolution itemized in your letter would be taken into consideration and I’m instructing all relevant MDAs to factor them in their work.

“On December 19 to be precise, while receiving the report of the committee that was set up to review the technical and administrative structure of the NIA, I underscored the need to review the entire national security architecture as I promised in my inaugural address on the 29th May 2015. The action is being initiated to receive maximum cooperation from the Senate in line with paragraph three of the Senate resolutions.”
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Wednesday, 31 January 2018

President Buhari Finally Writes Senate Over Herdsmen Killings In Benue State (See Details)

President Muhammadu Buhari says it is not true that he has done nothing to resolve the crisis between Fulani herdsmen and farmers in Benue State.

This is contained in Buhari’s letter to the Senate.

Senate President, Bukola Saraki read it to his collegeaues on Wednesday.

The President was quoted as saying the police, on his directive, is working “strenuously” to apprehend those behind the killings in Benue State.

The letter reads,“I thank you for your letter referenced NASS/8S/R/01/33 dated 18th January 2018 and carefully studied the resolutions and comments there in. As I briefed you and the RT. Hon speaker when we met, several courses of action have been taken prior to the senate resolution.

“You may recall that I told you of the following steps taken as soon as the information came in to me about the Benue killings. One, on Thursday 4th January, I sent the minister of interior and the deputy inspector-general of police in charge of operations for an on-the-spot assessment of the situation.

“Two, on Friday 5th January, the inspector-general of police briefed me verbally on the latest situation, calm had then been restored.

“Three, on Monday 8th, the minister of interior met with the following, governors of Adamawa, Kaduna, Niger, Benue Taraba and Nasarawa together with the DG of the State Security Services, inspector-general of police, CG civil defence, minister of agriculture and rural development and police commissioner of the six aforementioned states.

“After the meeting instructed the minister of interior to brief you on the information gathered so far and steps taken. On Tuesday, 9th of January, at a session with governor Samuel Ortom of Benue state during which in informed of police arrests of some suspects. In addition, I told him that have instructed to speed up trial of the suspects and give wide publicity of the police efforts.

“At the instance of the governor, a meeting was held in the presidential villa on 15th with a wide cross-section of Benue personalities and frank and open discussions were held. Everybody appreciated the difficulties of this farmers-herders strife. I assured all of my commitment and assured justice would be done.

“To infer therefore that nothing has been done, is incorrect. The police are strenuously working to apprehend the rest of the culprits of these heartless killings.

“Furthermore, I have instructed the IGP to relocate to Benue state and redeploy forces to the most sensitive towns. The federal government is initiating measures to address these and other security challenges, alleviate the consequence of these attacks and forestall reoccurrence.

“On December 19 to be precise, while receiving the report of the committee that was set up to review the technical and administrative structure of the NIA, I underscored the need review the entire national security architecture as I promised in my inaugural address on the 29th May 2015, action is being initiated to receive maximum cooperation from the senate in line with paragraph three of the senate resolutions.”
Read More »

Saturday, 27 January 2018

President Buhari Arrives Ethiopia For 30th AU Summit (Photos)

President Buhari arrives Addis Ababa ahead of his participation at the 30th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union in Ethiopia on 26th Jan 2018.


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Buhari Is Completely Focused On Governance, Not 2019 Elections – Yemi Osinbajo

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has said President Muhammadu Buhari is completely focused on governing the country, and not on whether or not he will run in 2019.

The vice president said this while fielding questions at the 2018 World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland.

Osinbajo, in the interview, discussed the steps the government is taking in building the economy.

The country will be self sufficient in rice by early 2019, the Vice President said, with the foreign reserves at $40 billion.

Although the country generates between 7000 MW and 9000 MW, Osinbajo said, the impact hasn’t been felt by the consumers.

The federal government is making investments to ensure power generation impacts the consumers, he said.
Read More »

Tuesday, 23 January 2018

Herdsmen Attacks To Be Brought Under Control Soon – President Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday assured Nigerians that increasing cases of killings being carried out by suspected herdsmen in communities across the country would soon be brought under control.

He said security agents deployed to affected areas would achieve the feat in no distant time.

According to a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, the President gave the assurance while receiving the Board of Directors of the Nigerian Economic Summit Group at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

“The President assured Nigerians that the rising attacks on communities by herdsmen will soon be brought under control by security forces deployed to the vulnerable areas across the country.

“He said the unfortunate incident of attacks, which had resulted in loss of lives and properties, had already brought sorrow and hardship on many Nigerians, with the government deeply affected,” the statement read.

The President also said his administration remained resolute and focused on delivering on the three-pronged promises of “securing the lives and properties of Nigerians, halting the pillage of the economy by corrupt public officials, and creating employment opportunities for the youths.”

He said the initial economic challenge posed by recession was already dwindling, with the economy smarting out and posting better results on falling inflation rates, higher foreign reserve and better ranking on ease of doing business.

“If you look critically into the 2018 budget, we have already taken into account key issues of more stable electricity, construction of roads and rails, and the airport concession,” he said.

The President said the government would work more to accelerate and increase momentum in agriculture, power, gas, manufacturing and processing, while commending the Chinese government for its support in improving infrastructure in Nigeria.
Read More »

Wednesday, 10 January 2018

Reno Omokri Calls President Buhari Out Again

Reno Omokri, former aid to ex-president Goodluck Jonathan, via his twitter account, has called out president Buhari.

According to Reno, Buhari is insensitive to the plights of people in Benue despite the killings in the state.

Read his tweet below;

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Buhari Has Done Well, Can Seek Second Term – Momoh

A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Prince Tony Momoh on Wednesday said President Muhammadu Buhari has done well in the delivery of his electoral promises.

Momoh, a former Minister of Information, gave the assessment in a telephone interview with newsmen on Wednesday.

He said though there were still some challenges in the country, Buhari had acquitted himself remarkably well as president of the country.

Momoh pointed out those who said Buhari had not done well were either playing politics or refused to check the facts.

He said the president had achieved a lot in the areas on which he anchored his campaign promises despite the herculean problems he met on ground.

“President Buhari has done well based on the facts available and not sentiments. He has done well in the delivery of his campaign promises despite the big problems he met on ground.

“For example, let us look at the area of security before Buhari came in, the Boko Haram insurgents were operating almost uninhibited, to the extent of seizing territories.

“But for Buhari’s intervention, Only God knows what would have happened to the country because of Boko Haram.

“Also, while some other countries are still wriggling under recession caused by the crash in commodity prices, the country is out and is even doing well in the area of diversification.

“Even the World Bank has just predicted that the country’s GDP will further grow in 2018, there are also monumental gains in the fight against corruption.

“I reviewed a book recently on the scorecard of the president and I was pleasantly surprised by some of the revelations about Buhari’s performance.

“Those who do not know, should go and check the facts, Buhari has done well as president,” he said.

He said the opposition was behind the cacophony of voices asking Buhari not to seek re-election based on the way they rated him.

Momoh said they were only seeing Buhari’s performance based on their perspectives which did not reflect the facts.

He said Buhari had the moral and legal right to seek re-election so long he made the decision and the party endorses him.

“The opposition cannot stop Buhari from contesting if he decides to do so and the party endorses him. The facts are different from the prism through which they are looking at his performance,’’ he said.

Momoh called for caution in treating the killings in parts of the country as being caused by Fulani herdsmen. He said criminal, including Boko Haram, might be hiding under Fulani herdsmen to unleash terror in some communities in the country.

“We should be careful in the way we see the killings in some parts of the country so that we can have a better understanding of dealing with the problem.
“Some criminals, such as cattle rustlers and even Boko Haram insurgents can also hide as Fulani herdsmen to unleash terror on Nigerians.

“The herdsmen we used to know we’re not carrying AK47, how we have come to this problem of killings calls for proper understanding. “It is not a political matter but a matter that needs understanding and attention because it involves lives,’’ he said.
Read More »

Tuesday, 9 January 2018

''Those Behind The Benue Massacre Will Be Fished Out And Brought To Justice'' - President Buhari Says After Meeting With Governor Samuel Ortom

President Buhari this afternoon had a closed door meeting with Benue state governor, Samuel Ortom, over the serial herdsmen killings in the state.
President Buhari told Governor Ortom that efforts are being made to fish out the attackers and bring them to justice. He also said that preventive measures are being put in place to avert future occurence.
“I assured Governor Ortom of our total commitment to the security of lives and property in Benue and elsewhere. We have deployed additional security resources to fish out the attackers, bring them to justice, and prevent further attacks" he said via his twitter handle. 
Read More »

Sunday, 7 January 2018

No Sane Person Will Vote For You – Ohaneze Tells Buhari

The Ohaneze Ndigbo, the leading Igbo social-political group, has told President Muhammadu Buhari that no sane person will vote for him come 2019 Presidential election.

Speaking with Punch, the National Publicity Secretary of Ohanaeze, Prince Uche Achi-Okpaga, pointed out that Buhari’s failure to check the menace of the herdsmen would affect his chances for re-election in 2019.

Achi- Okpaga said that no sane person would vote for a government that was not able to secure the lives of its citizens.

He noted that it was strange that the country’s security agencies, which he described the “best in Africa”, had been unable to deal with the herdsmen.

His words, The spate of blatant and inconceivable killings of helpless Nigerians by the Fulani herdsmen have been so alarming and uncontrollable. I have no doubt that the studied silence of the Federal Government is deliberate.

No sane person will risk to vote for a government that has conspicuously displayed irresponsibility to the security of her citizens.

Apart from the killings at Nsukka and Awgu (Enugu State), the people of Benue, in general, have been severally and severely killed in tens and hundreds without the Commander – in – Chief of the Armed Forces , making a national broadcast or giving a specific instruction on the matter even when the treasury of Nigeria was depleted to give him adequate medical attention to save his own life.
Read More »

Saturday, 6 January 2018

'Respect Yourself And Retire Quietly, You Have Failed Woefully'' - Cardinal Okogie Slams President Buhari

Archbishop Emeritus of the Catholic archdiocese of Lagos, Anthony Cardinal Olubunmi Okogie, has lashed out at President Buhari for considering to seek a second term.

The clergyman in an interview with The New Telegraph, said it is an insult on Nigerians for the president to be considering to seek a second term when he has failed woefully since assuming office.



President Buhari has not declared publicly his intention to run for a second term but there are indications that he might be seeking a re-election. On Wednesday January 3rd, the Minister of Communications, Adebayo Shittu, after meeting with President Buhari, said he has informed the president of starting his re-election campaign in the South West.

Speaking in the interview, Cardinal Okogie said

“What has he done in the years he had been in the saddle? He has performed woefully; that’s the verdict of Nigerians. Let the president respect himself and retire quietly. Coming out to talk of 2019 is insulting not only to those who voted him to power but to all Nigerians. There are so many problems confronting the people and he should be thinking of what to do about them. For second term, he must be a joker. That is all I can say for now because I don’t want to dignify them with a lengthy statement. It is not worth it.”
Read More »

Wednesday, 3 January 2018

Tinubu To Renegotiate With Buhari Ahead Of 2019 Presidential Election

The National Leader of the APC, Chief Bola Ahmed Tinubu was believed to have told some of those close to the president that whilst he and his loyalists in the South-west were ready to back Buhari’s re-election bid, the condition for their support would be different this time around.

A source disclosed to Thisdat that the APC chieftain had told those who approached him on Buhari’s re-election bid that “let it be known that we supported him in 2015 based on trust. This time, around, we have to negotiate proper agreement”.

Although it is almost a fait accompli that the president would run in next year’s election, sources in the APC are nonetheless very concerned that the contest will be much tougher due to the disappointment, mistrust and discontent with the administration by a large section of Nigerians.

Accordingly, the Buharists have been reaching out to seek the understanding and cooperation of all that matter, as they forge ahead with Buhari’s re-election.
Read More »

Tuesday, 2 January 2018

''Nigeria To Ban Rice Importation This Year'' - President Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has pledged that his administration will ban rice importation in 2018.
While stating this in his New Year broadcast the President said;
“We have got to get used to discipline and direction in economic management. The days of business as usual are numbered.
“Two years ago I appealed to people to go back to the land. I am highly gratified that agriculture has picked up, contributing to the government’s effort to re-structure the economy. Rice imports will stop this year. Local rice, fresher and more nutritious will be on our dishes from now on.
“By the same token, I am today appealing to enterprising Nigerians with ideas and unemployed graduates and other able-bodied and literate men and women with ideas not to just sit and wait for employment from the government or the Organized Private Sector.Great nations are built by enterprising people who turn their hands to anything that circumstances dictate.”
Read More »

Monday, 1 January 2018

Full Speech: President Buhari Says People Responsible For The Fuel Scarcity During This Festive Period Will Not Go Unpunished

Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari gave his 2018 New Year's National broadcast this morning.
In the speech, the President had very strong words for those who may have been behind the recent fuel scarcity that the nation experienced saying, 'I am determined to get to the root of this collective blackmail of all Nigerians and ensure that whichever groups are behind this manipulated hardship will be prevented from doing so again. Such unpatriotism will not divert the Administration from the course we have set ourselves'. 

Read the full speech below...
I join my fellow citizens this morning to welcome and celebrate the New Year 2018. This year promises to be pivotal in our quest for CHANGE.
Unfortunately, I am saddened to acknowledge that for many this Christmas and New Year holidays have been anything but merry and happy. Instead of showing love, companionship and charity, some of our compatriots chose this period to inflict severe hardship on us all by creating unnecessary fuel scarcity across the country.

The consequence was that not many could travel and the few who did had to pay exorbitant transport fares. This is unacceptable given that NNPC had taken measures to ensure availability at all depots. I am determined to get to the root of this collective blackmail of all Nigerians and ensure that whichever groups are behind this manipulated hardship will be prevented from doing so again.

Such unpatriotism will not divert the Administration from the course we have set ourselves. Our government’s watch word and policy thrust is CHANGE. We must change our way of doing things or we will stagnate and be left behind in the race to lift our people out of poverty and into prosperity.

My address to fellow Nigerians this morning is devoted mainly to informing you about the intense efforts this Administration is putting to address our country’s huge infrastructural deficit.

We are going to make significant in-roads in advancing road, rail and power projects across the country. 

The Ministry of Power, Works and Housing is one of the drivers of this Government’s commitment to renew and increase Nigeria’s stock of infrastructure in order to achieve global economic competitiveness as targeted under the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan.

With regards to Railways, we have set ourselves ambitious targets. Already in construction stage is the Lagos-Kano Standard Gauge Railway. 

The line should reach Ibadan from Lagos by the end of this year and will carry two million passengers per year and five million tons of cargo will be transported every year giving a substantial boost to the country’s economy.

Construction of the Kano – Kaduna segment is expected to commence this year and reach Kaduna by the end of 2019. By the end of 2021 the two ends will be joined so that we will have standard gauge railway across the main North-South trading route.

The Abuja – Kaduna route will be boosted by additional rolling stock next Thursday and will be able to handle one million commuters annually.

At the same time I have approved and negotiations will be concluded in the first part of this year for the Port Harcourt to Maiduguri line covering Aba, Owerri, Umuahia, Enugu, Awka, Abakaliki, Makurdi, Lafia, Jos, Bauchi, Gombe, Yola and Damaturu. The Abuja to Itakpe line will go through Baro and terminates in Warri with construction of a new seaport at Warri.

Negotiations are also advanced for the construction ofother railway lines, firstly from Kano to Maradi in Niger Republic passing through Kazaure, Daura, Katsina, Jibiato Maradi.

Secondly, Lagos to Calabar the “Coastal Rail” through Ore, Benin, Agbor, Asaba, Onitsha, Sapele, Ughelli, Warri, Yenagoa, Otuoke, Port Harcourt, Aba, Uyo and Calabar. In the next few years, all these Nigerian cities will be linked by functional modern rail systems, giving enormous boost to the social and economic life of our people.

With respect to the Abuja Capital Light Rail, progress has reached 98% completion, as at 64% completion when we assumed office. Only test runs remain before start of operations. 

This train service will stimulate economic activities in the Federal Capital and provide residents with an efficient and safe transportation system. Twelve railway sub-stations around the capital over a 45.2 kilometre route will serve as a catalyst and a pull factor to the economy of the area. The Light Rail System will reduce traffic congestion and carbon emission in line with the Administration’s policy on climate change.

Management of the Federal Road Maintenance Agency (FERMA) has been reconstituted and has been charged with a 12 week rapid intervention in road repairs to cover all the geo-political zones. Government is undertaking repairs and maintenance of 44 roads within the the six geo-political zones.

Twenty five major highways will be funded under the N100b SUKUK facility. Each geo-political zone will benefit by an equal amount of N16.67b. The following major highways are to receive special attention:

a. Oyo – Ogbomosho,

b. Ofusu – Ore – Ajebandele – Shagamu,

c. Yenegoa Road Junction – Kolo Otuoke – Bayelsa Palm,

d. Enugu – Part Harcourt Dual Carrriage Way, 

e. Onitsha – Enugu Expressway, 

f. Kaduna Eastern Bypass,

g. Dualization of Kano – Maiduguri Road,

h. Dualization of Abuja – Lokoja – Benin Road,

i. Dualization of Suleja – Minna Road.

In addition, Government has approved work to start on the re-construction of Abuja – Kaduna – Zaria – Kano roadwhich is in a state of disrepair. Work will soon start and is expected to be completed in 2019.

More Nigerians across the country are experiencing improved power supply to their homes and businesses. However, power remains a concern to this governmentbecause too many people still do not have regular and reliable supply.

The Payment Assurance Guarantee Scheme which started in January 2016 has enabled the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trader to raise so far N701 billion to assure Generation Companies of at least 80% payment for any power delivered to the national grid.

Consequently, generation has now reached 7,000MW. On December 8, 2017 the country achieved 5,155MW of power delivered to consumers, the highest level ever recorded.

Several moribund projects have been revived. Repairs of Afam Power Station added 110MW in 2017 and another 240MW will be added this year through a private investment partnership.

Katsina Power Project is now being tested and producing 10MW of power from wind for the first time in Nigeria. It should be fully operational this year. 

The Zungeru 700MW Hydroelectric Power Project, stalled by court cases is due for completion in 2019. The transmission and other requirements to operate the 30MW Gurara Phase 1 Hydroelectric Plant, the 40MW KashinbillaHydroelectric Plant and the 215 MW Kaduna Gas/LPG/Diesel Power Plant will also be completed this year.

A landmark project, Mambilla Hydroelectric Power Project is at last taking off. This project has been on the drawing Board for 40 years, but now the engineering, procurement and construction contract for the 3,050MW project has been agreed with a Chinese joint venture Company with a financing commitment from the government of China. Completion is targeted for 2023.

As I mentioned earlier, the Transmission Company of Nigeria can now distribute all the 7,000MW that can be generated. TCN and the Niger Delta Holding Company have added 1,950MVA of 330 down to 132KV transformer capacity of 10 transmission stations and 2,930MVA of 132 down to 33KV transformer capacity of 42 sub-stations including Ikot Ekpene, Aba, Alagbon, Ajah, Ejigbo, Funtuaand Zaria.?

This Administration is working with the privatised distribution Companies to overcome the continuing challenges of distribution.

These massive public works should spearhead the recovery and lead millions back to employment. You will recall that it was not until last year that we got out of the economic recession into which the country had fallen as a consequence of past unsustainable economic policies which projected short-term illusory growth.

The government is slowly stabilizing the economy.

It was in order to change the steady and steep decline that we adopted the more sustainable policies and programmes captured in the Economic Recovery Plan. Diversification efforts have resulted in improved output particularly in agriculture and solid minerals sectors. The relative exchange rate stability has improved manufacturing sector performance.

We have got to get used to discipline and direction in economic management. The days of business as usual are numbered.

Two years ago I appealed to people to go back to the land. I am highly gratified that agriculture has picked up, contributing to the government’s effort to re-structure the economy. Rice imports will stop this year. Local rice, fresher and more nutritious will be on our dishes from nowon. 

By the same token, I am today appealing to enterprising Nigerians with ideas and unemployed graduates and other able-bodied and literate men and women with ideas not to just sit and wait for employment from the government or the Organized Private Sector. Great nations are built by enterprising people who turn their hands to anything that circumstances dictate. 

In respect of political developments, I have kept a close watch on the on-going debate about “Restructuring”. No human law or edifice is perfect. Whatever structure we develop must periodically be perfected according to changing circumstances and the country’s socio-economic developments. We Nigerians can be very impatient and want to improve our conditions faster than may be possible considering our resources and capabilities. When all the aggregates of nationwide opinions are considered, my firm view is that our problems are more to do with process than structure.

We tried the Parliamentary system: we jettisoned it. Now there are shrill cries for a return to the Parliamentary structure. In older democracies these systems took centuries to evolve so we cannot expect a copied system to fit neatly our purposes. We must give a long period of trial and improvement before the system we have adopted is anywhere near fit for purpose.

However, there is a strong case for a closer look at the cost of government and for the public services long used to extravagance, waste and corruption to change for the better. I assure you that government is ever receptive to ideas which will improve governance and contribute to the country’s peace and stability.

As the electioneering season approaches politicians must avoid exploiting ethnicity and religion by linking ethnicity with religion and religion with politics. Such must be avoided at all costs if we are to live in harmony.

In this respect the rest of Nigeria could learn from the South Western States who have successfully internalized religion, ethnicity and politics.

Political discourse should be conducted with civility, decorum and in a constitutional manner. We all have a collective responsibility to strengthen our democracy and entrench the rule of law. We should draw encouragement from the series of bye-elections conducted by INEC last year which were generally violence free and their outcomes adjudged to be free and fair. 

Before I conclude my address I must reassure my fellow citizens that security of life and property is still top of our government’s agenda. We have since beaten Boko Haram. Isolated attacks still occur, but even the best-policed countries cannot prevent determined criminals from committing terrible acts of terror as we have seen during the past years in Europe, Asia, Middle East, elsewhere in Africa and in America. 

Our government remains determined to protect all Nigerians in line with our election pledge and promises.On behalf of all Nigerians let me offer our thanks to the Armed forces, the Police, other para-military forces and traditional authorities who are working round the clock to ensure that you and I go about our normal business in reasonable safety. 

Terrorism and urban crimes are world-wide phenomena and our security forces are continuously adapting their responses to changing threats.

With regard to rampant cases of kidnappings, we are taking immediate short-term measures to combat this new evil creeping into our societies. Tighter police methods and swift and severe punishment for those proved to be engaged in kidnapping are on the way.

With respect to Niger Delta, Government is still engaging responsible leadership of the Communities to help in identifying and addressing genuine grievances of the region. Our clean-up programme in collaboration with the United Nations is making satisfactory progress.

I am grateful to all the Governors and other Political &Community leaders of the Niger Delta States for their part in bringing relative peace to the areas.

Finally let me again express my heartfelt thanks to all Nigerians who prayed for me during my illness last year. I feel deeply humbled by your prayers and good wishes and I am more determined than ever to serve you to the best of my ability.

Good morning. And I wish everyone a Happy New Year.
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‘Why President Buhari Does NOT Deserve 2nd Term In 2019’ - Omokri

Omokri, former Special Adviser on New Media to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan has given reason President Muhammadu Buhari does not deserve a second term.

The former presidential aide said the appointment of “living people to the board of private companies” is a good reason to vote against Buhari in 2019.

Omokri highlighted the appointment of dead people into board of public enterprises also reason why Buhari don’t deserve a second term.

In a tweet via his social media handle, he wrote, “Not done with appointing dead people for public enterprises, the Buhari administration has appointed living people to the board of private companies.

“These are the people who told you Jonathan was clueless. Now they tell you Buhari deserves a second term, will you also believe?”
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Sunday, 31 December 2017

Prof. Soyinka Attacks President Buhari Over Fuel Scarcity

Professor Wole Soyinka has called on the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration to end the current fuel scarcity in the country rather than buying time and passing blame.

The playwright said this in a statement he entitled, “Blame passing: The New Year Gift to a Nation,’’


Soyinka said,
“I recently ran the gauntlet of petroleum queues through three conveniently situated cities – Lagos, Abeokuta and Ibadan – deliberately, this Friday. Even with ‘unorthodox’ aids of passage, this was no task for the faint-hearted.“Just getting past fueling stations was traumatising, an obstacle race through seething, frustrated masses of humanity, only to find ourselves on vast stretches of emptied roads pleading for occupation. As for obtaining the petroleum in the first place – the less said the better. 
“I suspect that this government has permitted itself to be fooled by the peace of those empty streets, but also by the orderly, patient, long-suffering queues that are admittedly prevalent in the city centres. 
“It is time the reporting monitors of government moved to city peripheries and sometimes even some other inner urban sectors, such as Ikeja and Maryland from time to time to see, and listen! 
“Pronouncements – such as the 1977 above – again re-echoing by rote in 2017– are a delusion at best, a formula that derides public intelligence. Buying time. Passing blame.
Yes, of course, the current affliction must be remedied, and fast, but is there a dimension to it that must be brought to the fore, simultaneously and forcefully? This had better be the framework for solving even a shortage that virtually paralysed the nation.”
He added, “It is however a masterful end-of-year image to take into the coming year, not only for the individual now at the helm of government, General Buhari, but for a people surely credited with the most astounding degree of patience and forbearance on the African continent – except of course among themselves, when they turn into predatory fiends. 
“When many of us are blissfully departed, an updated rendition of this same clipping – with a change of cast here and there – will undoubtedly be reproduced in the media, with the same alibis, the same in-built panacea of blame passing.”.” 
Soyinka added,
“As the tussle for the next round of power gets hotter in the coming year, the electorate will again be manipulated into losing sight of the base issue… Sooner than later, but not as soon as pledged, the fuel crisis will pass. And then, of course, we shall await the next round of shortages, then a recommencement of blame passing. 
“What will be the commodity this time – food perhaps? Maybe even potable water? In a nation of plenty, nothing is beyond eventual shortage – except, of course, the commonplace endowment of pre-emptive planning and methodical execution.”
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‘We Made Mistake In Appointing Dead Persons As Board Chairmen’- Federal Government Begs

The Presidency rose yesterday in its own defence over the inclusion of the names of some dead persons as chairmen or members of newly constituted boards and parastatals.

It said it was all a mistake which would be rectified in due course.

No fewer than three of the appointees -Chief Frank Okpozo, Mr. Donald Ugbaja and Christopher Utov – were already dead when the list of 209 chairmen and 1258 board members were released by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr. Boss Mustapha, on Friday night.

Okpozo was named as Chairman of the Nigerian Press Council; Ugbaja, a retired deputy Inspector General of Police, was listed as a member of the Consumers Protection Council while Utov was included as a board member of the Nigerian Institute of Social and Economic Research (NISER).

The development sparked heavy criticism of government especially on social media.

Speaking to reporters yesterday on the issue, the Senior Special Assistant to the on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu said that the list was prepared before President Muhammadu Buhari took ill and was released by the SGF without any alteration.

The President, he said, had requested 50 names from each of the state chapters of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2015.

The nominations were harmonized by the national secretariat of the party which then submitted the list to the immediate past SGF, Babachir Lawal.

Shehu said: “However, complaints arose from some governors who felt they were not carried along in the process.

“To answer this, the president constituted a committee under the vice president to review and reflect the interest of the governors.”

He said that the report submitted by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo was delayed because of President Buhari’s illness and his subsequent medical vacation abroad.

“The president’s trips for medical attention slowed down completion of the process,” he said.

The president only decided to revisit the matter recently and therefore directed the new SGF to release the list, he said.

“The current SGF was only directed to complete that process by releasing the list which he apparently did without altering it.

“The new SGF did what he was asked to do. There is nothing scandalous or extraordinary about what has happened.”

The SGF in a statement attached to the list of the appointees said the constitution of the boards was “very necessary, so as to provide a proper governance and oversight structure for government agencies and parastatals.”

He added: “The constitution of the boards with the appointments is a demonstration of this government’s efforts aimed at building strong institutions of governance, and by extension, improving the quality of policy formulation and supervision.
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Saturday, 30 December 2017

Expect Major Improvement In Power, Rail, Road - Presidency To Nigerians

Nigerians have been told by the presidency to expect major facelift in power, rail and roads in 2018 based on the present administration’s investment in infrastructure.
The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, said this in a statement made available to journalists in Abuja.

“President Buhari’s investment in infrastructure will see major facelifts across the country in power, rail and roads, which have been scheduled to come on stream in 2018,” Adesina said.

Adesina said it was appropriate to, at the twilight of 2017 and at the threshold of a New Year, recount some key achievements of the administration in the outgoing year.

He said despite global economic challenges and initial outlook of slow, or unlikely, recovery, the Nigerian economy trumped predictions and witnessed some remarkable changes in 2017.

“In our review of the economy based on facts and figures from the National Bureau of Statistics, we are pleased to note that the economy has been on the path of steady growth since the second quarter, after contracting for five consecutive quarters.

“President Muhammadu Buhari is hopeful that the exit from recession, stabilisation of the naira and robust harvest in the agricultural sector will continue to impact on the livelihood of Nigerians,” he said.

Adesina noted that multilateral institutions like the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund have already projected higher growth for the economy in 2018.

He said the government was hopeful that the gains of 2017 in agriculture would be further improved.

He added, “The agricultural sector posted consistent growth levels throughout the recession, leading other sectors into positive growth rates.

“Accordingly, Nigeria saw bumper food harvests, especially in rice, whose local production continues to rise significantly with states like Ebonyi, Kebbi and Kano leading the pack, while Ogun joined the loop by the end of 2017.

“The price of a 50kg bag of rice – a staple in our country – has fallen by about 30 per cent since the beginning of 2017, as local production continues to rise. The price will keep falling, as production remains consistent and rises.

“The Food and Agriculture Organisation said the number of Nigerians facing food insecurity in the northeast dropped by half this year.”

Punch
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