“We will strive to strengthen our unity and inclusiveness so that no section or group will feel left behind or left out.”
KEYNOTE ADDRESS BY HIS EXCELLENCY, BOSS GIDAHYELDA MUSTAPHA, SECRETARY TO THE GOVERNMENT OF THE FEDERATION AT THE VICTORY CELEBRATION DINNER OF THE ALL PROGRESSIVES CONGRESS (APC), UNITED KINGDOM ON 4TH MAY, 2019
Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen, I bring you Greetings from everyone back home in Nigeria.
1. First and foremost, I want to give thanks to Almighty God Who has spared our lives to witness another victory for Nigerian democracy and victory for our party APC in the last general elections in Nigeria.
2. Secondly, I also want to thank the millions of Nigerians who voted to re-elect Mr President, Muhammadu Buhari, as the president for the next four years. On behalf of the government, we are deeply humbled and profoundly grateful to Nigerians home and abroad for judging Mr President worthy of continuing to serve the Nation.
3. In particular, on behalf of the government, I would like to thank all members of APC UK Presidential Campaign Committee and its leadership. I would like to also thank the Party Chapter Leader, Prince Ade Omole, the Chairman of the APC UK Campaign Committee, Hon. Folu Ojutalayo, all members of the UK Presidential Campaign team and other various Support Groups in the United Kingdom.
4. My thanks to all those who contributed to the logistical expenses of the campaign both at home and abroad.
5. I also thank the millions of volunteers, self-appointed overseers, canvassers, agents, escorts and sentries who sacrificed so much of their time and resources to ensure the success of these elections. My thanks to members of other political parties that endorsed the APC towards the General elections.
6. As stated in the Next Level manual, our campaign contract with Nigerians did confirm that the new administration of President Muhammadu Buhari will intensify its efforts in Security, Restructuring the Economy and Fighting Corruption. We have laid down the foundation in the last four years and we are committed to seeing matters to the end. We will strive to strengthen our unity and inclusiveness so that no section or group will feel left behind or left out.
7. What will the Buhari administration do in its second term? Many things, in fact, a truckload of solutions to drive Nigeria ahead and lift Nigerians out of poverty. This is going to be a term of consolidation, a term of legacy building, as encapsulated in the Next Level road map. Progress and prosperity for Nigerians at several levels as stated by the Presidency.
8. The three fundamental areas will continue – security, economic revival, and fighting corruption – but there will be some other definite deliverables. Please permit me to quickly summarise them:
9. Education will be refocused, with the curriculum tweaked to place more emphasis on Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Maths. These will surely launch Nigeria into a new realm, positioning her with the developed world in the not too distant future.
10. Health care will come under focus, with the intention of building a healthy populace, who can hold their own in different areas of endeavour.
11. Infrastructure development will continue. Roads, rail, bridges, housing, and many others. The country is already one massive construction site, and this will continue to further unlock economic development, and improve the quality of life.
12. The second term Government will be more inclusive. The boundless talents of Nigerians both within and outside the Country will be harnessed for national development. More women, youths and Nigerians in the Diaspora would be brought on board.
13. Poverty reduction will be a deliberate and crucial policy. The Social Investment Program, already described as the largest and most successful in Africa, will be strengthened with the introduction of Monibank for traders and artisans, while an Entrepreneurs Bank would also be established to take care of small and medium scale enterprises. Home Grown School Feeding Program, catering for the needs of about ten million pupils now, will be given a fillip, engagement of unemployed graduates, and conditional cash transfer to the poorest of the poor, would also continue. Millions of Nigerians would be taken out of grinding poverty in the next four years, no doubt.
14. In the Power Sector, Billions of dollars had been expended on this in the past decades, but where is the power, as the President would ask. Emphasis would be on power generation and distribution as to make a difference in the next four years.
15. Agriculture would continue to have pride of place in terms of funding. Lip service had been paid to diversifying the Nigerian economy for decades, but now, it is a reality. Food security will be achieved in the second term. About eight million jobs were generated from the sector in the first term, many more millions are sure to come.
16. The anti-corruption war will be intensified. We will build on the successes of EFCC and ICPC. Non-patriotic Nigerians with itchy fingers, past and present, will continue to fall in trouble, and probity and accountability will remain the order of the day. Honesty remains the best policy.
17. All these, and more are what Nigerians can look forward to in the legacy epoch, which is the second term of the Buhari administration. And by the time the term ends, the country would never be the same again.
18. We have a duty to serve the best interest of Nigerians and committed to run a people-oriented government.
19. We are prepared for the second term tasks and shall not relent on our efforts to make Nigeria Great again.
20. I thank you once again for your invitation to this momentous event, your priceless support thus far and may God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
* The speech was delivered on behalf of the SGF by Alhaji Abdur-Raman Balogun, SA Media to Hon Abike Dabiri-Erewa
*Photo: Boss Mustapha