President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria is looking to run for re-election come 2019.
The president has brought in his previous winning team that won the election for him back in 2015. Buhari named the former Director-General (DG) of his campaign last Presidential campaign and current Minister of transportation, Rotimi Amaechi to lead the 2019 campaign.
Among the members of the winning team includes; Mr. Simon Lalong, Plateau State governor; Mr. Nasir El-Rufai, Kaduna State governor; Mr. Tanko Almakura, governor of Nasarawa State and Mr. Mala Buni, National Secretary of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
Buhari picked Amaechi over the Imo state governor, Mr. Rochas Okorocha, who had hoped to get the position.
Nigerian youths since since the era of Jonathan have been very wary and had carefully studied the game politicians played, this stemmed from their approach during elections, and when in office. One of the politicians that is known to play tricks, among the youths includes Dino Melaye, Bukola Saraki, and Femi Fani-Kayode, and while Dino and Bukola are in office as Nigeria awaits their departure from the politics of the country, Femi instead has been known to be a man with twitter fingers using ethnics bigotry to turn youths among themselves.
In the coming up to the elections, President Buhari though aged, was an appeal to the youths, whom at the time were very tired of the numerous corruptions practices by many people in Goodluck Jonathan. People also arrested by the anti-graft agency, EFCC at the time were known to be released after a long time of delayed justice, and when Nigerians have seem to move on with their lives, but at the time, Nigeria youths were wide awake, they have seen it, they know it, and instead of revolution as their African youth counterparts, Nigerian waited for the election period, Jonathan was ousted back to Bayelsa.
Muhammadu Buhari winning in the 2015 election needed no analysis, while corruption was eating up Jonathan presidency, and Nigeria currency was flying to South Africa in Ayo Oritsejafor personal plane, Boko Haram the terrorist group was not helping in the North-East, Boko Haram was the nail in the coffin of Jonathan.
As unknown soldiers run away for their lives, or cry for help to government to give them military supplies and ammunitions as Boko Haram weapons seems to be overpowering them, Nigerian youths hear this cry for help from the once proclaimed "best ground fighters in Africa", but the Military heads siphon the funds, while Jonathan watches these scandals happening in his government.
One of the best way to get to the heart of Nigerians in their scary period is promise them security. A Nigerian might agree to go spend $2 dollar a day out of poverty and be Ok with it, while cursing out the government in his/her abode, but getting stabbed by some brainwashed illiterates while hungry is what a Nigeria won't take.
So back to 2015, the National elections, Nigerians were totally fed up, they were never going to take another four years of poverty mixed with fear, then laced with Jonathan empty promises. Buhari, at the time who had in the past try to get elected as President, was once again presented to the Nigerian people. Buhari was perfect, he was a military person, and in his resume was the extinction of Chadian soldiers who had invaded Borno, something similar to what Boko Haram was trying to do in the North East.
While Buhari military experience was one of the asset in 2015 after Jonathan was termed"clueless" in the fight against Boko Haram, is stance on corruption was also needed at the time, so for ordinary Nigerians, and Nigerian youths, it was getting two for one by voting for Muhammadu Buhari.
The Many Sins Of Military Converted General
After 16 years of People democratic party(PDP) and clueless of the Jonathan-led government, Nigerians hoped for a new dawn. The chant of "Sai Baba"continues to fill the Nigeria space, as hopes and aspirations of Nigeria had risen and saw Buhari as the no nonsense general to save the day.
Buhari instead was not ready, but his love cuts deep in the heart of Nigerians they did never doubted voting for me. Buhari had no ministers, A government that was elected on 29th May 2015, will only have his ministers sworn in only on November 11 2016, this will push away prospective investors that were looking forward to Buhari's government.
Nigerians had to scream and shout at Buhari before he could get things up and running, the screams of Nigeria would affect one of the ears of Buhari months later into his presidency. Though the Aso rock claimed that the President had air infection, this infection took Buhari out of Nigeria for more than 103 days, and the once hailed President had to be Protested out of the Nigeria embassy in the UK several times to return to Nigeria.
Before the infection, the APC government had in the past been outspoken about the Jonathan government subsidy removal. The APC, then opposition government believed it was a scam that was being proposed by the Jonathan government to loot Nigerian funds, and some APC party members came out in strong protest, this was one of the greatest protest in Nigeria government that shook the entire nation, until both government and Union leaders came to an agreement that benefitted both parties.
Only for Buhari to come into power to do same.
Exchange rate: The exchange rate had been unstable during Jonathan reign of power, but Jonathan was able to let it stay at 190 Naira to 200 Naira before leaving power. Only for Buhari to come with a bad economic policy that will raise the dollar to 600 Naira. It was during one of his(Buhari) trip outside Nigeria that his Vice-president, Yemi Osibanjo was able to stabilise the USD to NGN exchange.
At this point, saying "Sai Baba" would either get you swear words from hungry and angry Nigerians, or you will be seen as a public nuisance. The popularity of Buhari continues to dwindle, and the anti-corruption was people had hoped for, was just another witch hunt at his previous opponent, and even with that, nobody has been locked up.
Buhari before his election victory is known to agree with the Nigeria youths, reason with them, and promise them "change," unfortunately for Nigerian youths, it wasn't Buhari promising change, but his media team. Buhari seems not to have known what has resonated with his core voters, he believes they are all 100% loyal supporters that will stick with him to the end, and that is why when hsi gvernment removed subsidy, there was no protest, then the Minister of finance announced the country is in recession, there was no protest, and when he had to do some errand about his health before leaving for 103 days, there was no solid protest.
The youths, both online and offline stood by him, and believed anybody against Buhari are people loyal to the former government.
Since the issue of SARS (Special Anti-Robbery Squad) started on Twitter, the Nigerian government had kept mute. The Inspector General of Nigeria police, and one of Buhari's appointees before now as seems to be a total failure and it is well known that people under his command were not obeying his directives from the Nation's capital, Abuja.
People wanted to hear the man they believed understand their pain, and their sufferings after series of complaints in tweets, evidences, pictures of brutality had surfaced online. Nigerians had allegedly tweeted that the SARS operatives in the country had turned out to be a complete menace and torn in their flesh.
Some of the complaints by the people includes illegal arrest, extortion, illegal detaining, sexual harasment and other forms of harasment. The corruption of the police had been reported to stem from the people in the highest office to the corporal in the Nigeria police.
One of our Nigerian news reporters had written about police aggression and threatening to shoot by Policemen of the Areh police station, Bodija, Ibadan, Oyo state. These are policemen that can't stand on their feet after their local gin and smoking local Indian hemp.
The horrible stories by Nigerians filled Twitter, and ended up trending on Nigeria Twitter, picked up by Al-Jazeera and BBC.
Aso Rock was quiet, the only place that could have successfully equated the quietness of Aso rock would be a graveyard. No response, not even a lie to say the government has heard the people, and have spoken to the IGP to fix, you know, something that will let people know they have the ears of Buhari, nobody from the vice-president or senate president's office too.
The deafening attitude of the President and his team was finally the nail in the coffee for most Nigerian youths that were on the fence of their next candidate in the next election. Nigerians, once again showed that they are ready to suffer, go into recession, pay more for gas for you, but will not let domestic terrorist like Boko-haram or "legal criminal" like SARS take them away untimely.
The only person that responded to the trend on Twitter was the former presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, who urged the Presidency to help people look into the cruelness of SARS operative.
The police organization in their own blind world, with no investigation whatsoever responded that the trend was a paid for trend by either criminals scared of SARS or politicians. The spokesperson of the Nigeria police on Twitter, Yomi Shogunle, who had in the past decided to mock a citizen for not calling him uncle or use Mr( A sign of respect in Yoruba tradition) decided to block people that tagged him in the post, and claimed that the people that claimed that they are threatened by SARS are having a bad dream and should wake up.
Yomi Shogunle response to complaints on #ENDSARS campaign
Yomi Shogunle according to some Nigerians on Twitter as being known as giving answers as if he is responding to kindergartens, he is not fit to be the PR of the police institution, one person wrote.
While the IGP orders a reform of the SARS operatives across the country, there was no action plan on what the reform will be like, it was another documents written by probably a robot.
Few hours after the reform was announced, some SARS operative once again were rumoured to have killed a Nigerian in Lagos at a lonely road, though the news was not confirmed, but SARS operative has been known to threaten to kill in the past, pointing guns at African China, a Nigerian musician coming from a video shoot. They had threatened to shoot our reporter in Ibadan for waiting on the road for another friend.
SARS don't have a name tag or badge number, they are always in plain clothes, with only one member of the group wearing a jacket of the Nigeria police force to show they are SARS.
They are uneducated young boys who had only finished Primary six or a secondary school dropout, so any young man with a laptop is automatically tagged a "Yahoo boy" an internet fraudster or when there is a picture of foreigners on your mobile phone, you are immediately tagged a fraudster, and bail can go from 50,000 Naira to 100,000 Naira.
They sometimes ask you to empty your wallet for them, or go to the nearest ATM, or threaten to kill you along the way and you will be tagged a armed robber or will sleep in the police cell.
They recently took the life of one Kudirat Adedayo, a woman who was only frying Akara(beans cake) by the roadside, while in pursuit of a young man holding a laptop. The SARS operatives once again had automatically believed he was an internet fraudster, and seeing him run away, is like seeing their daily bread run away, and so shoot at the young man...The stray bulled hit Ms Adedayo, and the poor woman died on the spot.
Ms Kudirat Abiola in her workplace before she was killed
Like every Nigerians out there, she is yet to get justice. This had happened since April 5, 2017. After the protest by some members of the family, the divisional police officer of the unit (Olosan Police station) that killed the woman released a meagre sum of 50,000 Naira to help with funeral procedure, and gave it to his boys to help the family.
The family of Ms Adedayo did not hear back from the police officers that took the money. Read the full news here.
The many plights of the Nigerian people is too much for Nigerian president to deafen to their cries. For all the amount of tax payers money used in treatment of the Nigeria president, he is expected to be able to hear them now.
Nigerians are not really looking forward to President Buhari and had lost total expectation. He had won with the youth support in a country of educated people, but they ignored all alarm bells, and went ahead to elect a man with no formal education. Nigerians voted for a man they assure that, even if he presents a certificate from Nigeria port authority or "NEPA" during the election, he will have their votes.
Right now, they are not too optimistic, and his media team should be equipped with better slogans come 2019, because their past mantra "CHANGE" is dead, and Nigerians, and most especially the youths have now realized that the hunger for power sometimes is what drives Nigerians politicians to re-contest elections, and not to help the common man.
Muhammadu Buhari is back in Nigeria. The president went on a medical checkup in the UK since the 19th of January, and has made some people believe he is dead, amidst different rumours.
The president flew in to the Kaduna international airport via NAF 541, and walked to his car unaided. The president arrives at the presidential villa in Abuja at 8.42am.
He has since met with the VP, Governors, Ministers, Service Chiefs and Top Government Officials as well as members of his family in the State House on 10th March 2017.
The special adviser on media and publicity to Buhari, Femi Adeshina wrote via Facebook;
President Muhammadu Buhari arrives after a medical vacation in London meets with VP, Governors, Ministers, Service Chiefs and Top Government Officials as well as members of his family in State House on 10th March 2017
Buhari returns 3: President Buhari being welcomed by his wife Aisha, daughter Zahra and other family members shortly after he arrived in State House after a medical vacation in London on 10th March 2017
Buhari returns 7: President Buhari with Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State, Governor Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo as he meets with Governors, Ministers, Service Chiefs and Top Government Officials in State House shortly after arriving from London on 10th March 2017
#NigeriaAt56: As Nigeria celebrates her 56th Independence day, read and watch the President Address to the nation.
Today – 1st October is a day of celebration for us Nigerians. On this day, 56 years ago our people achieved the most important of all human desires – freedom and independence. We should all therefore give thanks and pray for our founding fathers without whose efforts and toil we would not reap the bounties of today.
2. I know that uppermost in your minds today is the economic crisis. The recession for many individuals and families is real. For some, it means not being able to pay school fees, for others it’s not being able to afford the high cost of food (rice and millet) or the high cost of local or international travel, and for many of our young people the recession means joblessness, sometimes after graduating from university or polytechnic.
3. I know how difficult things are, and how rough business is. All my adult life I have always earned a salary and I know what it is like when your salary simply is not enough. In every part of our nation people are making incredible sacrifices.
4. But let me say to all Nigerians today, I ran for office four times to make the point that we can rule this nation with honesty and transparency, that we can stop the stealing of Nigeria’s resources so that the resources could be used to provide jobs for our young people, security, infrastructure for commerce, education and healthcare.
5. I ran for office because I know that good government is the only way to ensure prosperity and abundance for all. I remain resolutely committed to this objective.
6. I believe that this recession will not last.
7. Temporary problems should not blind or divert us from the corrective course this government has charted for our nation. We have identified the country’s salient problems and we are working hard at lasting solutions.
8. To re-cap what I have been saying since the inception of this administration, our problems are security, corruption and the economy, especially unemployment and the alarming level of poverty.
9. On Security, we have made progress. Boko Haram was defeated by last December – only resorting to cowardly attacks on soft targets, killing innocent men, women and children.
10. Nigerians should thank our gallant men of the Armed Forces and Police for rescuing large areas of the country captured by insurgents. Now, residents in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa States, as well as several neighbouring states go about their daily business in relative safety. People can go to mosques, churches, market places in reasonable safety.
11. Commuters can travel between cities, towns and villages without fear. Credit for this remarkable turn-round should go to our Armed Forces, the Police, various sponsored and private vigilante groups, the local traditional leaders. Security is a top to bottom concern and responsibility.
12. Besides Boko Haram, we are confronting other long-running security issues, namely herdsmen vs farmers, cattle rustling, kidnappings. This Administration is firmly resolved to tackle these challenges and to defeat them.
13. A new insurgency has reared up its head in the shape of blowing up gas and oil pipelines by groups of Niger Delta Militants. This Administration will not allow these mindless groups to hold the country to ransom.
14. What sense is there to damage a gas line as a result of which many towns in the country including their own town or village is put in darkness as a result? What logic is there in blowing up an export pipeline and as a result income to your state and local governments and consequently their ability to provide services to your own people is reduced?
15. No group can unlawfully challenge the authority of the Federal Government and succeed. Our Administration is fully sympathetic to the plight of the good people of Niger Delta and we are in touch with the State Governments and leaderships of the region. It is known that the clean-up of the Ogoniland has started. Infrastructural projects financed by the Federal Government and post amnesty programme financing will continue.
16. We have however, continued to dialogue with all groups and leaders of thought in the region to bring lasting peace.
17. Corruption is a cancer which must be fought with all the weapons at our disposal. It corrodes the very fabric of government and destroys society. Fighting corruption is Key, not only to restoring the moral health of the nation, but also to freeing our enormous resources for urgent socio-economic development.
18. In fighting corruption, however, the government would adhere strictly by the rule of law. Not for the first time I am appealing to the judiciary to join the fight against corruption.
19. The Third Plank in this Administration’s drive to CHANGE Nigeria is re-structuring the economy. Economies behaviour is cyclical. All countries face ups and downs. Our own recession has been brought about by a critical shortage of foreign exchange. Oil price dropped from an average of hundred USD per barrel over the last decade to an average of forty USD per barrel this year and last.
20. Worse still, the damage perpetrated by Niger Delta thugs on pipelines sometimes reduced Nigeria’s production to below One million barrels per day against the normal two point two million barrels per day. Consequently, the naira is at its weakest, but the situation will stabilize.
21. But this is only temporary. Historically about half our dollar export earnings go to importation of petroleum and food products! Nothing was saved for the rainy days during the periods of prosperity. We are now reaping the whirlwinds of corruption, recklessness and impunity.
22. There are no easy solutions, but there are solutions nonetheless and Government is pursuing them in earnest. We are to repair our four refineries so that Nigeria can produce most of our petrol requirements locally, pending the coming on stream of new refineries. That way we will save ten billion USD yearly in importing fuel.
23. At the same time, the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and the Central Bank have been mobilized to encourage local production of rice, maize, sorghum, millet and soya beans. Our target is to achieve domestic self-sufficiency in these staples by 2018.
24. Already farmers in thirteen out of thirty six states are receiving credit support through the Central Bank of Nigeria’s Anchor Borrowers Programme. Kebbi state alone this year is expected to produce one million tonnes of locally grown rice, thanks to a favourable harvest this year. As part of the 13 states, Lagos and Ogun are also starting this programme. Rice alone for example costs Nigeria two billion USD to import.
25.The country should be self-sufficient in basic staples by 2019. Foreign exchange thus saved can go to industrial revival requirements for retooling, essential raw materials and spare parts. It is in recognition of the need to re-invigorate agriculture in our rural communities that we are introducing the LIFE programme.
26. Government recognises that irrigation is key to modern agriculture: that is why the Ministries of Agriculture and Water Resources are embarking on a huge programme of development of lakes, earth dams and water harvesting schemes throughout the country to ensure that we are no longer dependent on rain-fed agriculture for our food requirements.
27. In addition, government is introducing Water Resources Bill encompassing the National Water Resources Policy and National Irrigation and Drainage Policy to improve management of water and irrigation development in the country. We are reviving all the twelve River Basin Authorities, namely;
I. Anambra – Imo
II. Benin – Owena
III. Chad Basin
IV. Cross River
V. Hadejia – Jama’are
VI. Lower Benue
VII. Lower Niger
VIII. Niger Delta
IX. Ogun – Osun
X. Sokoto – Rima
XI. Upper Benue
XII. Upper Niger
28. The intention is eventually to fully commercialise them to better support crop production, aqua –culture and accelerated rural development.
29.This Administration is committed to the revival of Lake Chad and improvement of the hydrology and ecology of the basin. This will tune in with efforts to rehabilitate the thirty million people affected by the Boko Haram insurgency in the Lake Chad basin countries.
30. The second plank in our economic revival strategy is centred on the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing. The Ministry will lead and oversee the provision of critical infrastructure of power, road transport network and housing development.
31. Power generation has steadily risen since our Administration came on board from three thousand three hundred and twenty four megawatts in June 2015, rising to a peak of five thousand and seventy four megawatts in February 2016.
32. For the first time in our history the country was producing five thousand megawatts. However, renewed militancy and destruction of gas pipelines caused acute shortage of gas and constant drop in electricity output available on the grid.
33. There has been during the period June 2015 to September 2016 big improvement in transmission capacity from five thousand five hundred megawatts to the present seven thousand three hundred megawatts.
34.There were only two system collapses between June and December 2015, but due to vandalism by Niger Delta militants the over-all system suffered 16 system collapses between March and July 2016 alone. As I have said earlier, we are engaging with responsible leadership in the region to find lasting solutions to genuine grievances of the area but we will not allow a tiny minority of thugs to cripple the country’s economy.
35. In the meantime, government is going ahead with projects utilizing alternate technologies such as hydro, wind, and solar to contribute to our energy mix. In this respect, the Mambilla Hydro project, after many years of delay is taking off this year. Contract negotiations are nearing completion with Chinese firms for technical and financial commitments.
36. The project is to be jointly financed by Nigeria and the Chinese-Export-Import Bank. In addition, fourteen Solar Power Projects have had their power purchase agreements concluded. Hence the plan to produce one thousand two hundred megawatts of solar electricity for the country would be realized on schedule.
37. And in line with the objective of government to complete all abandoned projects across the country, the Rural Electrification Agency’s projects needing completion are provided for in the 2016 Budget. Bringing electricity to rural areas will help farmers, small scale and cottage industries to integrate with the national economy.
38.Roads Construction and Rehabilitation has taken off. The sum of twelve billion naira was allocated to this sector in the 2015 Budget, not enough even to pay interest on outstanding unpaid claims.
39. Notwithstanding the budgetary constraints, the current budget allocated two hundred and forty billion naira for highway projects against twelve billion naira in 2015. Many contractors who have not been paid for three years have now remobilized to sites. Seven hundred and twenty point five billion naira has so far been released this budget year to capital projects.
40. The Ministry of Power, Works and Housing has received one hundred and ninety seven point five billion naira. Work on the following highways has now resumed.
1. Dualization of Calabar – Itu Road in Cross River/Akwa Ibom States.
2. Dualization of Lokoja – Benin Road, Ehor – Benin city, Edo State.
3. Re-construction of outstanding sections of Benin – Shagamu Express way, Edo/Ogun States.
4. Expansion works on Lagos – Ibadan Dual carriageway, Ogun/Oyo States
5. Rehabilitation of Onitsha – Enugu Expressway, Anambra/Enugu States.
6. Rehabilitation and Reconstruction of Enugu – Port Harcourt Dual carriageway, Abia/Rivers States.
7. Rehabilitation of Hadejia – Nguru Road, Jigawa State.
8. Dualization of Kano – Katsina Road, Kano State.
9. Dualization of Kano – Maiduguri Road, Borno State.
12. Construction of Oju/Lokoja – Oweto Bridge over River Benue, Benue State.
41. Other major highways are in the queue for rehabilitation or new construction.
42. Already contractors have recalled about nine thousand workers laid off and Government expects that several hundreds of thousands of workers will be reengaged in the next few months as our public works programme gains momentum.
43. On railways, we have provided our counterpart funding to China for the building of our standard gauge Lagos -Kano railway. Meanwhile, General Electric is investing two point two billion USD in a concession to revamp, provide rolling stock, and manage the existing lines, including the Port Harcourt-Maiduguri Line. The Lagos-Calabar railway will also be on stream soon.
44. We have initiated the National Housing Programme. In 2014 four hundred million naira was voted for Housing. In 2015 nothing. Our first budget this year is devoting thirty five point six billion naira. Much of the house building will be private – sector led but Government is initiating a pilot housing scheme of two thousand eight hundred and thirty eight units uniformly spread across the 36 states and FCT.
45.We expect these units to be completed within 4 – 6 months. These experimental Nigeria House model Units will be constructed using only made in Nigeria building materials and components. This initiative is expected to reactivate the building materials manufacturing sector, generate massive employment opportunities and develop sector capacity and expertise.
46. The programmes I have outlined will revive the economy, restore the value of the naira and drive hunger from our land.
47. Abroad, Nigeria’s standing has changed beyond belief in the last 18 months. We are no longer a pariah state. Wherever I go, I have been received with un-accustomed hospitality. Investors from all over the world are falling over themselves to come and do business in Nigeria. This government intends to make business environment more friendly because we can not develop ourselves alone.
48. All countries, no matter how advanced, welcome foreign investments to their economy. This is the essence of globalization and no country in the 21st century can be an island. Our reforms are therefore designed to prepare Nigeria for the 21st century.
49. Finally, let me commend Nigerians for your patience, steadfastness and perseverance. You know that I am trying to do the right things for our country.
Nigeria: The former PDP chieftain and president of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, have comment on the current administration of President Muhammadu Buhari during third International Conference on African Development Issues — themed, “Driving inclusive and sustainable development in Africa: Models, methods and policies” — organised by Covenant University, Ota, Ogun State on Monday.
While answering one of the questions of the audience at the conference that “Is there any hope for Nigeria under the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari?” Obasanjo replied saying;
Is there any hope for Nigeria under this administration? I came back from Geneva, Switzerland a few days ago to attend a conference titled, ‘Are elections giving democracy a bad name?’ We had an election, we elected a leader and the good thing about democracy is that the power you have to elect a leader is also the power you have to remove him. I am saying this because I said earlier that if you don’t see any leader that has done well in the 56 years of Nigeria’s independence, then let us forget about Nigeria.
I will tell you what I know and I will tell you what I don’t know. I know Gen. Muhammadu Buhari. He served under me in the military. His characteristics that I know, his behaviour that I know, he has not deviated from them. He was never a perfect man, he is not a perfect man and no leader can ever be a perfect man because they are human beings. But if you read my book, what I said about him is correct. He is not a hot person when it comes to economy. He is not a very hot person when it comes to foreign affairs. But he will do well in matters of military and he will do well in fighting Boko Haram.
For me, we have no hope if we have no future. I am an optimist as far as Nigeria is concerned. If somebody doesn’t get it all right for now, we will get somebody who will come up and fix whatever is missing. The administration before this had no clue on how to deal with Boko Haram, there is no doubt about that.
You may not like the way he (Buhari) is fighting corruption. I fought corruption. We recovered over $1.25bn from Abacha and his men. We didn’t make noise. Also, we recovered £100m and about N30m and those who were helping us, the lawyers and the rest said there was still at least $1bn to be recovered at that time. I put it in my handover notes. But rather than encourage scrupulous persons, we had another spate of corruption.
The Nigeria presidentpresident, Muhammadu Buhari has finally signed the Nigeria budget of 2016 into law. The signing of the controversial budget was signed inside the executive office of the president.
The Nigeria budget had been the centre of different controversies after the house of Assembly said the initial budget document was missing, and another news that budget had been padded by some selfish Nigerians, while another report said that the Lagos-Calabar railway project was missing in the budget inclusion.
While all these were happening, the Nigerian president refused to sign the budget until it meets the standard that will benefit the whole country and not some individuals. On May 6th, 2016, the final budget was signed, and had in attendance the Vice-president, Yemi Osibajo, Embattled senate president, Bukola Saraki, speaker of the house of reps, Yakubu Dogara and other ministers and aides to the president.
The Lagos-Calabar project has now been included in the project too.
Read The Remark Of The Nigeria President President On The Budget :
It gives me great pleasure today to sign the first full-year budget of this administration into law. I thank the leadership of the National Assembly, in particular, the Senate President and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and indeed all members of the National Assembly for their cooperation in making this a reality.
The budget is intended to signpost a renewal of our commitment to restoring the budget as a serious article of faith with the Nigerian people. This Administration is committed to ensuring that henceforth the annual appropriation bill is presented to the National Assembly in time for the passage of the Act before the beginning of the fiscal year.
Through the 2016 budget, aptly titled “Budget of Change’’, the government seeks to fulfil its own side of the social contract. The Budget I have signed into law provides for aggregate expenditures of N6.06trn. Further details of the approved budget, as well as our Strategic Implementation Plan for the 2016 budget, will be provided by the Honourable Minister of Budget and National Planning.
I shall be speaking in more details about the Budget, its implementation and the over-all national economic and social policies of the Government in my address on May 29th, God willing.
In designing the 2016 budget, we made a deliberate choice to pursue an expansionary fiscal policy despite the huge decline in government revenues from crude oil exports. This is why we decided to enlarge the budget deficit at this time, to be financed principally through foreign and domestic borrowings. All borrowings will however be applied towards growth-enhancing capital expenditures.
The signing of the budget today will trigger concerted efforts to reflate the Nigerian economy, a key element of which is an immediate injection of N350bn into the economy by way of capital projects. To illustrate our renewed commitment to infrastructural development, the 2016 budget allocates over N200bn to road construction as against a paltry N18bn allocated for same purpose in the 2015 budget.
Despite the current difficulties we will work extra-hard to achieve our revenue projections. Our revenue generating agencies are coming under better management and are being re-oriented. The implementation of the Treasury Single Account (TSA) is expected to contribute significantly to improving transparency over government revenues.
Our determined fight against corruption is resulting in improvements in the quality of public expenditure. The work of the Efficiency Unit, as well as other public financial management initiatives, are also contributing in this regard. The continuing efforts to reduce recurrent expenditures should hopefully free up more funds for capital expenditure in 2017 and beyond.
As I said in my New Year message, living in State House does not in any way alienate me from your daily struggles. I read the newspapers and listen to the TV and radio news. I hear your cries. I share your pains.
We are experiencing probably the toughest economic times in the history of our Nation. I want to commend the sacrifice, resilience and toughness of all Nigerians young and old who have despite the hardships continued to have hope and confidence of a great future for Nigerians. But permit me to say that this government is also like none other. We are absolutely committed to changing the structure of the Nigerian economy once and for all.
We are working night and day to diversify the economy so that we never again have to rely on one commodity to survive as a country. So that we can produce the food we eat, make our own textiles, produce most of the things we use. We intend to create the environment for our young peoples to be able to innovate and create jobs through technology.
I cannot promise you that this will be an easy journey, but in the interest of so much and so many we must tread this difficult path. I can assure you that this government you have freely elected will work with honesty and dedication, day and night to ensure that our country prospers and that the prosperity benefits all Nigerians. God bless Federal Republic of Nigeria.
The Nigerian government recent meeting with UAE is seen to have yielded a good result after officials at UAE recently blocked an attempt by an ex-governor to transfer half a billion dollars to UAE. The ex-governor hit the brick wall of strict policies anti-laundering rule that have now been put in place after the meeting with the current Nigerian government in January.
In the agreement in January, both governments signed the "Judicial Agreement on Extradition, Transfer of Sentenced Persons, Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters, and Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal and Commercial Matters, which includes the recovery and repatriation of stolen wealth"
Since the agreement in January, the anti-graft agency in Nigeria have been working with the Dubai government by giving out list of suspected former government officials who are likely to stash their stolen funds in the UAE.
According to a anonymous source:
The Federal Government team has met with those from the UAE on intelligence sharing, the list of those on EFCC radar, the number of highly-placed Nigerians with fat accounts in UAE and those with choice properties in Marina (Dubai), Bur Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Doha.
Some of the former governors include one from the South-South, two from Northcentral, two from the Northeast, one from the Northwest, and one from the Southwest.
More than six ex-ministers and a former presidential aide, who is on the run over the $2.1billion arms deals, were said to have acquired choice mansions and malls in UAE. One of the former ministers, who was alleged to own two houses in Dubai, was said to have served as a front for a former First Lady.
The Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu has come forward to talk to Nigerians, most especially the Nigerian youths after different hashtags emerged on Twitter last week about the state of affairs in the country and the frequent travellings by the Nigeria president, President Buhari.
Nigerians accused the President of touring different countries all in the guise of meetings while things keep getting hard for the common man in the country. The president was criticised heavily of not concentrating of the governance he had promised the people of the country, especially the scarcity of petroleum in the country.
Garba Shehu while replying critics said that people are entitled to their different opinions, but Nigerians want change, and they also need to be patient, considering the damage done by the PDP government for 16 years.
His article reads :
I have been amused, reading a number of jokes concerning the frequency of the President, Muhammadu Buhari’s foreign trips.Questions have been raised about why so many visits, and what are the benefits Nigeria is getting?
I will make it clear from the beginning that the critic is entitled to his and her opinion and nothing said here is intended to silence him or her.Criticism goes with the territory and as it is often said in a wisecrack, if you don’t like the heat, get out of the kitchen.
President Muhammadu Buhari came into office under the mantra of change. While Nigerians are yearning for change, you need someone who will set up the infrastructure, both at home and abroad for it. President Buhari is busy doing that. The change is manifest in where he visits and what he does.
In the delegations accompanying him abroad, President Buhari has slashed the numbers, bringing them down to a tolerable or the bearable minimum. He went to the United Nations General Assembly in September with an unbelievable 32 officials in his delegation. These included his cook, his doctor and luggage officer.
His predecessor in office went to the same meeting with 150 officials and family members the year before. Wherever they are given government accommodation and feeding, members of President Buhari’s entourage receive reduced allowances, thereby saving the government some money.
In public diplomacy, experts say that it is better conducted through face-to-face interaction than through third parties. This is even moreso at the level of heads of state. To do by it by proxy is to miss the effect of fostering strong interpersonal relations between leaders, by which nations benefit.
President Buhari has so far visited Germany, South Africa, USA, Niger, Tchad, Cameroon, Benin, Ghana, South Africa, India, Iran and Malta, where we are presently for the Commonwealth Summit. Mostly, these were due to either the United Nations, EU, African Union or energy and security-related summits. They were mostly undertaken to attend specific meetings, not State Visits. Looking at these assignments, the trips are inescapable for the President. What would Nigerians say of their leader when see the array of world leaders assemble, as they would shortly be doing discussing climate change in Paris on Monday and their own President is missing from the table?
Those of us who were around under Abacha read all the taunts about him being a sit-at-home leader. Abacha was despised for not representing his country abroad.
President Buhari’s foreign visits have been marked by punishing schedules. They are always business-like and results-oriented.
All trips have been marked by tight schedules. Meeting after meeting, happening back-to-back morning, afternoon and evening. The President has had to travel overnight for some of these meetings.
The visit by any president to another country is the highest act in international relations. It sends out a message that that county is important to the visitor.
It is not like your usual vacation abroad. Official discussions involving political leaders, the military, the diplomats and at times, business people are held at multi- track levels. In foreign policy you stand on a quick sand of events and you slip up if take a rest or lose focus. Governments also know that their achievements at home will be meaningless if they cannot project them abroad. Who or where are the foreign investors,whose hand you are seeking if you can’t travel meet them? Will they come if they don’t know about the country? President Buhari demonstrated a keen understanding of these when in the first week of his taking the office, he brought together foreign policy and all three cardinal objectives of his administration-security,economy and war on corruption- by embarking on visits to neighboring countries.
In our recent history, much of the West had ignored Nigeria under the corrupt PDP administration for many years, which warranted the country’s tilt towards some Asian countries.
As a consequence, this country has suffered past isolation of various types, including the denial of access to the arms-purchase market.
As a member of the then Standing Committee of the Nigerian Guild of Editors, I remember being in a delegation that visited the Aso Rock Villa, to beg the government at that time not the execute the writer and activist, Ken Saro-Wiwa.
At the meeting with the Number Two man in that government, Major-General Oladipo Diya, he announced to everyone’s shock and disbelief that Ken had been executed. “Honestly,” he muted, “I think he has been executed about two days ago.”
What followed that pronouncement was a global outrage.
The then Foreign Affairs Minister, Arch. Tom Ikimi representing Nigeria at the Commonwealth meeting in New Zealand, shattered the feelings of the leaders of those countries when he announced to them that he had not been briefed about the executions and begged for time to talk to the leaders back in Nigeria.
Nigeria faced an imminent expulsion from the group and would have been so sacked but for the intervention of the then President of South Africa, late Nelson Mandela.
In place of this extreme form of sanction, a suspension and and a barrage of sanctions followed and remained in place until an appreciable remorse was was shown and progress made towards the return to democracy by Nigeria.
Throughout that period of time, it was difficult being a Nigerian in the international space. As council members of the UN Human Rights Commission, Africans would caucus in Geneva without us Nigerians. Like lepers, we were shunned wherever we showed up.
I mentioned this short narrative to illustrate two things: one, for a country to do the right things all the time and two, you don’t know the joy being a part of international gatherings until you suffer the pain of exclusion from them. Short of begging the world, there was nothing that the Abacha government didn’t do to be taken back into the Commonwealth.
And it is against this background that I felt the need to pen this opinion in the hope of bringing better understanding to fellow countrymen and women on the current subject matter.
There is no reason to be angry with anyone criticizing President Buhari for traveling abroad. In politics, even if President Buhari were to bring with him a suitcase full of cash and a pot gold each time he returned from a trip, someone will criticize him, saying that the journey is wasteful.
The PDP will kick, knowing that they got 16 years and did nothing with it. Those who didn’t do much during their term of governance will find it instructive to fault whatever the President is doing.
If President Buhari is successful as a leader, the PDP will be history. My own point here is that he is doing a great job and the fruits are here, and many more will soon come. He is working to strengthen diplomatic relations, trade and the security of our nation. He holds serious meetings with serious investors and has fetched us investments in the range of billions of US Dollars.
Now, countries such as France, UK, The U.S are supporting Nigeria with intelligence, weapons and training for our military against Boko Haram and the economic saboteurs in the Delta region.
President Buhari will definitely make Nigeria great,what the PDP fooled us for 16 years.
All heads of countries around the world now take Nigeria seriously. His foreign trips are for business, security of the country and bilateral contacts- contacts that get actualized by follow-ups and the love and support a leader enjoys at home and abroad.
Today the world is in a warm embrace of President Muhammadu Buhari. Nigerians should be proud of the attention, love and admiration, importance, respect and investment he is bringing to Nigeria. These trips are not for enjoyment.
Lastly, to answer those who ask all the time, what is he bringing back home? We are not a country of beggars. It is good if something is in the bag as the leader comes home from a trip.
Culturally, we never return home from a trip without a souvenir for everyone left at home. Yes it is good he declares something upon his return. But the most important task for the President at this time is to reset the image of Nigeria abroad, given the damage it sustained over many years in the past.
So far, in fairness, the President has projected a large image of Nigeria and of himself which should be a matter of pride for all our citizens. Marketing of Brand Nigeria can never be more important than currently it is.
The President is doing a great job for the nation. He needs to be supported.”
The controversial rapper, Eedris Abdulkareem continues his political beef with the former Nigerian president, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo on stage at the #Felabration 2015. The rapper who uses all avenues and opportunities to slam the ex-president talks about the whole music industry and the world celebrating Afro music legend, Fela, but the whole country will not celebrate Obasanjo because he was a thief.
The singer also slams the current president of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari. Eedris said that "Muhammadu Buhari was the one who killed Fela", and still ruling us, because they believed we cannot rule, before continuing his stage performance.
Watch the video here:
Eedris Abdulkareem supports the former Nigerian president, Goodluck Jonathan and even went ahead to make a track asking his number of fans to vote for him, but Jonathan unfortunately lost in the last presidential election.