Says patriotic Nigerians have nothing to fear in war against corruption
Promises bumper harvests this year
Tobi Soniyi in Abuja
President Muhammadu Buhari is obviously not done with the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as he hit the party again monday, dismissing its 16 years in the saddle as extremely wasteful and of no moment.
‘‘I want Nigerians to realise that what this government inherited after 16 years of the PDP government was no savings, no infrastructure, no power, no rail, no road and no security,” he told journalists in his Daura hometown after the Eid-el-Kabir celebrations.
The attack, which came through a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Malam Shehu Garba, is the second within two days of efforts to explain the nation’s economic recession that has imposed harsh economic conditions on the vast majority of Nigerians, many of whom are now grumbling loudly, asking the president and his administration to deliver more quickly on the change he promised them during electioneering.
The president had in an Eid-el-Kabir message on Sunday blamed the recession on the global economic downtown and lack of savings by preceding administrations.
“The present recession is as a result of cumulative effects of worldwide economic downturn and failure in the past to plan and save for difficult times,” he had explained.
His comment had attracted a strong rebuke from the PDP which told him to stop grumbling and face up to his task of reviving the economy.
“The president and his APC were elected to further better the lots of Nigerians, and not to dish out constant complaints on the situation which they mindlessly created not minding the attendant consequences of their actions on our collective destinies,” the PDP’s National Publicity Secretary, Prince Dayo Adeyeye, said in a direct reference to the president’s message, adding: “It is, therefore, high time they stopped this unnecessary grumbling and concentrate on how to redeem our economy by providing good governance to the people.”
But Buhari returned to the same theme yesterday contending that his inheritance was less than illustrious, asking for more time to repair the damage of the past.
His message was, however, not all about gloom as he gave a cheering report of progress being made in the agriculture sector, promising that a bountiful harvest was in the offing this year.
‘‘We should thank God this year, the reports I’m getting, which is very pleasing, is that we will have a bumper harvest this year,” he said, thanking Nigerians for their support for his government’s policies, programmes and actions aimed at improving security, revamping the economy and combating the fight against corruption.
The president gave further reports on his campaign promises to secure the country and fight corruption and gave himself a pass mark.
‘‘Nigerians can see what we have done on Boko Haram and what we are doing to resolve the problem in the Niger Delta,” he stated.
Buhari said he was committed to delivering on his campaign pledges, adding that his economic revival policies were targeted at job creation, particularly for the youth with agriculture as his core route to employment generation.
‘‘For the youths, graduates and non-graduates who are interested in agriculture, the Federal Ministry of Agriculture in collaboration with the CBN are doing something to provide employment for them,’’ the president said.
On his star programme, corruption, he said the war against graft was proceeding without fail, assuring patriotic Nigerians who had nothing to hide to fear not.
“We will ensure justice and fairness for all,” he said, even as he vowed that all those who had abused public trust would not only be brought to book but would also be made to return their loot to the national till.