“Buhari Has Left Governance In The Hands Of Cabals In Aso Villa”

Senator representing Bauchi Central Senatorial district has taken a swipe at President Muhammadu Buhari, saying, he was never in charge of governance, but has left the nation in the hands of cabals in the Villa.

In his contribution on the floor of the Senate, Misau wondered at the composition of the executive, saying that Ministers have failed woefully in discharging their responsibilities.

“Mr. President, distinguished colleagues, President Buhari is not in charge, but the cabals. They determine who and who to be appointed.”

“During our New year holiday, cabals in the Presidency became suspicious that the Senate President may defect to PDP, so they have made up their minds to initiate impeachment moves against him’, Misau alleged.

Calling names, he said: “The Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami was almost a nuisance.”.

He faulted the recent appointment of a Director General of National Intelligence Agency (NIA).

According to him, the newly appointed DG has failed his career exams twice but got appointed as Senior Special Assistant, foreign matters before the development.

The lawmaker was saddened that government was derelicting in the implementation of policies that would have better the lot of Nigerians.

Meanwhile, Senator Abdullahi Adamu representing Nasarawa South Senatorial district differed strongly that all arms of government were a subset of each other.

He explained that failure of the executive was also the failure of legislative arm.

He urged decorum rather than making sweeping statements by Senators, adding that Senators as statesmen should not be antagonistic to the executive.

Buhari Promises Ortom Improved Security In Benue

President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday said he has assured the Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, of his commitment to the security of lives and property in the state and other parts of the country.

Buhari said he gave the assurance during a meeting he had with the governor at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

He disclosed this in a message he posted on his verified Twitter handle, @MBuhari, shortly after he met the governor to review the security situation in the state especially as it concerns recent killings.

He said he was committed to ensuring that all those behind the recent attacks in the state were brought to justice.

He also promised that his government would do everything possible to forestall a recurrence.

The President wrote, “I just met with the governor of Benue State. 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.”

Benue Killings: Ortom Meets Buhari, Wants Military To End Conflict

The Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, said he would support any move, including military option, that can put an end to the killings being witnessed in the state.

He however said he would not support the Federal Government’s plan to establish cattle colonies until he understood the concept.

Ortom spoke with State House correspondents after a meeting he had with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

He said although he had briefed the President on the telephone immediately the incident took place, he felt there was the need for him to meet Buhari personally after he had succeeded in restoring normalcy to a level.

When asked for his position on the suggestion that full blown military operation be applied in his state, the governor said, “Anything that can stop the killings of my people, I will go for it. I support it.

“Any policy or any directive, anything that will help stop the killing of these innocent people who are not armed, I will support it because this cannot continue.

“We know that the continuity of this will create greater challenges. I don’t want it to continue. We are struggling with economic issues, we are struggling with political issues and we are struggling with several other issues in this country, security issues and all that, Benue State should not be part of this, there is no need for it.”

Buhari Inaugurates Additional Locomotives, Coaches In Kaduna

President Muhammadu Buhari has inagurated 10 additional locomotives and two coaches in Rigasa Train Station, Kaduna.

The President reaffirmed the government’s commitment to link all commercial cities and production centre’s including state capitals through rail in order to fastback the socio-economic development of the nation.

While commissiong the additional locomatives and coaches in Kaduna, he said that the government will vigorously pursue rail development in Nigeria.

The President added that negotiations are currently on-going with private sector investors for narrow gauge rail lines in order to expand the reach of reach of rail services in the country.

2019: APC South East Caucus Adopts Buhari

The All Progressives Congress (APC), South East zonal caucus of the party on Sunday at Uburu, Ohaozara Local Government Area of Ebonyi adopted President Muhammadu Buhari for second term.

The adoption was the high point of the outcome of the South East zonal caucus meeting held at the home town of the Minister for Science and Technology, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu in Uburu.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the meeting was attended by top party chieftains from across the South-East geopolitical zone.

The decision to adopt Buhari for a second term was contained in a five-point communique issued at the end of the caucus meeting.

The communique was jointly signed by National Vice Chairman of the party South East and zonal publicity Secretary, Mr Emmanuel Enukwu and Mr Hyacinth Ngwu respectively.

The document commended the President for infrastructural development of the South East zone, job creation and empowerment programmes.

The communique also lauded Buhari for appointing people from the zone as chairmen and board members of federal boards and parastatals.

“We appreciate the Igbo’s growing support and interest in the ruling All Progressives Congress.

“It is our unshakable belief that the quest of the Igbos for the Presidency is achievable in the shortest time only in APC and that time is 2023.

“We pledge our unalloyed loyalty to APC led Federal Government under Buhari and we hereby unequivocally and unconditionally assure the President of our support for his reelection for a second term in office in the 2019 general elections.

“The party in South-East commends the President for all the projects the government is executing in South-East particularly the abandoned Enugu-Onitsha and Enugu-Port-Harcourt high-ways, modernised second Niger Bridge, coastal and in land rail lines among others,”

The caucus in the communique further commended the leadership of the APC and maintained its unalloyed support and confidence in the leadership.

(NAN)

Nigeria’s Problems More Of Processes Than Structures – Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has said that Nigeria’s problems have to do more with process than structure.

Buhari made his position known in his New Year nationwide broadcast to Nigerians early on Monday.

READ: Full text of Muhammadu Buhari’s 2018 New Year address

He noted that while the nation had tried the parliamentary system of government and jettisoned it, there was ongoing clamour to return to the same system.

He urged Nigerians to learn to give a long period of trial and improvement for the adopted system to get better.

Buhari said, “In respect of political developments, I have kept a close watch on the ongoing 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.”

This notwithstanding, the President said there was 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.

He assured Nigerians that his government was receptive to ideas which would improve governance and contribute to the country’s peace and stability.

As the country approaches electioneering season, Buhari urged politicians to avoid exploiting ethnicity and religion by linking ethnicity with religion and religion with politics.

Such, he said, must be avoided at all costs if Nigerians must live in harmony.

He urged the rest of the country to learn from the south-western states.

“In this respect, the rest of Nigeria could learn from the south-western states who have successfully internalised 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 a series of by-elections conducted by INEC last year which were generally violence-free and their outcomes adjudged to be free and fair,” he said.

Buhari also assured Nigerians that security of life and properties still topped his government’s agenda.

He added, “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. ”

On the situation in the Niger Delta, Buhari said the Federal Government was still engaging responsible leadership of the communities to help in identifying and addressing genuine grievances of the region.

He added that government’s clean-up of Ogoni in collaboration with the United Nations was making satisfactory progress.

He thanked all the state governors and other political and community leaders of the Niger Delta States for their part in bringing relative peace to the areas.

Buhari said he was sad that the Christmas and New Year holidays had been anything but merry and happy.

Instead of showing love, companionship and charity, the President regretted that some Nigerians chose the period to inflict severe hardship on others by creating “unnecessary fuel scarcity” across the country.

The consequence of this, he noted, 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 unpatriotic act will not divert the administration from the course we have set ourselves. Our government’s watchword 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,” the President said.

In the New Year, Buhari said his administration would continue with his efforts aimed at addressing the country’s huge infrastructural deficit.

He said the government would make significant in-roads in advancing road, rail and power projects across the country.

With regards to railways, Buhari said the government had set ambitious targets for itself.

While describing the Lagos-Kano Standard Gauge Railway as being in construction stage, he said the line should reach Ibadan from Lagos by the end of 2019.

He added, “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.

Buhari said the management of the Federal Road Maintenance Agency had been reconstituted and had been charged with a 12-week rapid intervention in road repairs to cover all the geo-political zones.

He said the government was undertaking repairs and maintenance of 44 roads within the six geo-political zones.

He added that 25 major highways would be funded under the N100bn SUKUK facility with each geo-political zone benefiting an equal amount of N16.67bn

The President admitted that power remained a concern to his government because too many people still did not have regular and reliable supply.

He noted that the Payment Assurance Guarantee Scheme which started in January 2016 had enabled the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trader to raise so far N701bn to assure generation companies of at least 80 per cent payment for any power delivered to the national grid.

Consequently, he said generation has now reached 7,000MW.

Buhari said he was gratified that agriculture had picked up, contributing to the government’s effort to re-structure the economy.

He said rice imports would stop this year while local rice which is fresher and more nutritious would be on dishes henceforth.

Key Achievements Of Buhari’s Administration In 2017 – By Femi Adesina

At the twilight of 2017, and at the threshold of a brand New Year, it is fitting to recount some key achievements of the Muhammadu Buhari administration in the outgoing year.

Here We Go

Despite global economic challenges and initial outlook of slow, or unlikely, recovery, the Nigerian economy trumped predictions and witnessed some remarkable changes in 2017, which include exiting from the worst recession in decades and a gradual stabilization of the naira.

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, stabilization of the naira and robust harvest in the agricultural sector will continue to impact on the livelihood of Nigerians.

Already, multilateral institutions like the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund have projected higher growth for the economy in 2018, and we are hopeful that the gains of 2017 in agriculture will be further improved.

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 Organization (FAO) said the number of Nigerians facing food insecurity in the northeast dropped by half this year.

Against all odds, 2017 has turned out the Year of Nigeria’s Agriculture Revolution, embodied by the successes of the Presidential Fertiliser Initiative (PFI) and the Anchor Borrowers Programme, which were launched by President Buhari.

For the records, more than a dozen moribund fertilizer blending plants were revived under the PFI this year.

Furthermore on the improved indicators, the inflation rate fell for ten consecutive months in 2017, February to November, with the Central Bank of Nigeria projecting that it is likely going to drop to single digit by 2018.

The Federal Government’s Social Investment Programme rolled out across the states and currently 5.2 million primary school children in 28,249 schools in 19 states are being fed daily, while 200,000 unemployed graduates were enlisted into the N-power Job Scheme.

As part of the empowerment programme, 250, 000 loans were distributed to artisans, traders and farmers in 2017.

In the power sector, the Federal Government launched a N701 billion Intervention Fuind (Payment Assurance Programme) aimed at supporting power generating companies to meet their payment obligations to gas and equipment suppliers, banks and other partners. The impact is already being felt as the amount of power distribution is now steady at around
4,000MW.

Dream turned reality in 2017 when the Federal Government began paying pensions to police officers who were granted Presidential Pardon in the year 2000 after serving in the former Biafran Police during the Nigerian Civil War.

These officers, and their next of kin, had waited for their pensions for 17 years since the Presidential Pardon.

Reforms by the Federal Government to inspire start-ups to cut unemployment saw Nigeria rise 24 places on the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business ranking, earning the country a place on the List of Top 10 Reformers in the world.

Nigeria’s foreign exchange reserves grew by $12 billion, reaching the highest level since 2014. Nigeria also added, this year, an additional $250m to its Sovereign Wealth Fund. Also, Nigeria’s trade balance crossed over into surplus territory, from a deficit in 2016.

To change the narrative on infrastructure deficit, the government successfully issued two Eurobonds (US$4.5bn), a Sukuk Bond (N100 billion), a Diaspora Bond (US$300m), and the first Sovereign Climate Bond in Africa, raising billions of dollars for infrastructure spending.

By March 2018, the Federal Government’s launch of a Tax Amnesty scheme is expected to raise hundreds of millions of dollars in additional revenues for investment in the country.

The Federal Government’s fight against corruption took a new turn in 2017 as the successful implementation of a Whistleblowing Programme saw millions of dollars recovered.

The Nigeria Customs Service recorded its highest revenue collection, crossing the One Trillion Naira (N1, 000,000,000, 000) mark; the target for 2017 was 770 billion Naira (N770,573,730,490) and 2016 collection was just under 900 billion (N898,673,857,431.07).

The Joint Admissions and Matriculations Board (JAMB), under the new management appointed by President Buhari in 2016, remitted N7.8 billion to the coffers of the Federal Government, a staggering distance from the N51 million remitted by JAMB between 2010 and 2016.

Finally, 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.

Femi Adesina
Special Adviser to the President
(Media & Publicity)

“Masses Support Made Me Remain In Politics”

President Muhammadu Buhari has revealed why he is still active and relevant in the Nigerian political scene.

According to the 75-year-old politician, the goodwill he enjoys from the masses remains the major factor that keeps him in politics.

President Buhari said this in a documentary, “The Human Side of President Buhari”, put together my his media team and was aired on the Nigerian Television Authority on Sunday.

The documentary was put together to provide the human side of Buhari that is largely unknown to Nigerians.

Earlier, the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, state governors, ministers, presidential aides and leaders of the All Progressives Congress who spoke showcased the President as a man of impeccable integrity, discipline and humour.

He said, “I pray five times a day thanking God that allows people to understand and believe me.

“This goodwill that I enjoy from the masses is what is keeping me in politics.

“And of course, my central objective is to provide transparency and accountable government.‎”

President Buhari Promises To Do More In Health Sector

President Muhammadu Buhari said on Thursday the Federal Government would increase investment in the health sector so that the country can halt the loss of well trained professionals to other countries.

He made the promise while receiving members of the executive committee of Medical and Dental Consultants Association of Nigeria (MDCAN) at State House, Abuja.

The President, according to a statement issued by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, applauded the group’s concern on the state of the nation’s health sector.

He said: “We will do our best to work on your recommendations and increase investment in the health sector.”

The President of MDCAN, Prof. Ngim E. Ngim, said the association consists of trainers, researchers, leaders and major stakeholders in healthcare, who are concerned about the wellbeing of the sector.

Buhari Swears In Seven New Permanent Secretaries

The seven newly appointed permanent secretaries were sworn in by President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday.

The new permanent secretaries were part of the 22 directors recently appointed to the new position by the President.

15 of them were sworn in few weeks ago in Abuja.

Those sworn in on Wednesday were – Mustapha Suleiman, Adekunle Oluyemi, Mrs. Ekaro Chukwumogu, and Adedayo Akpata.

Others were – Abdulkadir Mu’azu, Osuji Ndubuisi and Bitrus Nabasu.

The President did not make any official remark after the swearing in ceremony as the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting commenced immediately after the event.

Buhari Appoints New Grand Kadi Of Sharia Court Of Appeal

President Muhammadu Buhari has requested the Senate to confirm Ibrahim Rufai Imam as the new Grand Kadi of the Sharia Court of Appeal, Federal Capital Territory.

Mr. Buhari made this request through a letter to the Senate on Tuesday.

The letter reads, “In accordance with the provision of section 261 of the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, as amended, I have the pleasure of forwarding the appointment of Ibrahim Rufai Imam as Grand Khadi of Sharia Court of Appeal, Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Abuja for confirmation.

“Please accept Mr. President the assurances of my highest esteem.”