2021: FG Claims ‘Tremendous Progress’ Despite 3,125 Killed By Bandits …Admits Insecurity, Biggest Challenge
The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, has said that his principal, President Muhammadu Buhari, made “tremendous progress” in the fight against banditry and insurgency in 2021.
He stated this in Lagos, yesterday, at a press conference to showcase the “achievements” of the Buhari regime during the outgoing year 2021.
It would be recalled that no fewer than 3,125 innocent persons were killed, and 2,703 abducted by bandits in northern Nigeria in 2021, according to figures obtained from the Nigeria Security Tracker, a project of the Council on Foreign Relations, an American think tank as well as quarterly reports released by the Kaduna State Government from January to September.
But despite the alarming number of innocent lives killed by bloodthirsty bandits and marauders ravaging the northern part of the country and kidnappers ubiquitous in both the North and the South, Mohammed said the president achieved some feats in the war against insecurity.
The minister said, “This administration, in spite of daunting challenges, made tremendous progress in 2021 in fighting insecurity, growing the economy, reforming the oil sector to spur more investments, emplacing world-class infrastructure, providing social safety net for the poor and most vulnerable in the society and also taking advantage of the huge opportunities offered by the Information and Communications Technology Sector.”
Mohammed, on behalf of the Buhari regime, thereafter appreciated Nigerians for their perseverance in the face of the security challenges plaguing the nation.
“We want to most sincerely thank all Nigerians for their support and perseverance. We want to reassure the nation that President Muhammadu Buhari is determined to leave a legacy of a safe,secure and prosperous nation,” he said.
Earlier, Mohammed said over 1,000 terrorists were crushed by soldiers in the volatile North-East zone which has been suffocated with the Boko Haram war for years, noting that over 2,000 civilians were rescued and over 22,000 terrorists surrendered.
The minister said that military operations in the North-East zone also resulted in the neutralisation of over 700 bandits, arrest of over 400 bandits, the rescue of over 1,000 civilians and recovery of over 3,200 livestock.
Buhari changed his service chiefs in January, 2021, after nationwide clamour for the injection of fresh blood and tactics against insecurity in the country but still, many Nigerians are unimpressed with their performances in the last 11 months.
Many citizens are also disappointed in the regime of the president, who rode to power on the heels of combating the security challenges plaguing the country in 2015 but the situation seems to have been aggravated in the last six years.
However, the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, has identified insecurity as the major challenge of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government in 2021.
Giving a rundown of the achievements of Buhari in 2021, Mohammed said the major challenge has been that of insecurity.
He, however, commended the military for the fight against insecurity.
According to Mohammed: “Let me admit straight away that the year has not been devoid of challenges. For the outgoing year in particular, the major challenge has been that of insecurity.”
The minister noted that in spite of the insecurity and economic challenges, the current administration has availed itself creditably.
“As I said in my introductory remarks, our biggest challenge in the outgoing year is in the area of security. Despite the enormity of the challenge, our military has continued to live up to their billing.
“We owe them a debt of gratitude for their patriotism and sacrifice. We just can’t appreciate them enough, as you will soon see when I break down their achievements in the year under review,” he said.
2021 has seen a significant leap in Nigeria’s insecurity challenges with banditry, kidnappings, and herders-farmers killing leading the pack.
Some Northern states like Niger, Borno, Kaduna, Katsina, Zamfara have been worst affected by banditry activities.
In these states, students, religious worshippers and commuters have been the major targets of bandits.
Wike, Promise Keeper – Eze Gbakagbaka
His Majesty, Eze Oha Evo III, King Leslie Nyebuchi Eke, has described the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, as an astute leader and a promise keeper.
Eze Eke stated this when he spoke with newsmen at the commissioning of Rumuigbo internal roads in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area, yesterday.
Governor Wike, he said, has so far proven that he has the interest of the state at heart, and expressed satisfaction over the Governor’s continuous project execution even towards the end of his administration.
According to him, the internal roads built by Governor Wike have opened the area to new trench of business and economic activities.
He noted that the community has now become a bee hive of business activities due to the roads.
The Evo King recalled how floods ravaged the area in recent times, but said such now belong to history due to Wike’s intervention.
On the recently commissioned phase one of the Trans-Kalabari Road, he said it has exposed the riverine communities to business activities as well.
He noted that the prices of commodities in the area will now stabilise as more business operators will be trooping into the place.
“The jinx of monopolistic operation is now broken. Everyone in the area will now be moved to do one business or the order. I think the Trans-Kalabari Road is one in million. Kudos to Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike”, he said.
He also called on the people to jettison all forms of rancour and acrimony and give the in-coming administration under the leadership of Sir Siminialayi Fubara the needed support in order to enable him execute more people-oriented projects like the out going governor.
The monarch, who supported the idea of ‘Consolidated Government’, revealed that it would bring about rapid development in the state.
“My thinking is that Consolidation is necessary. For instance, the beauty of governance in Lagos State is that they maintained one party over the years, which has addressed the issue of abandoned projects”, he said.
The Governor Nyesom Wike-led administration has executed more projects in the state than any other government with no record of abandoned project.
By: King Onunwor
Pensioners Demand Separate Ministry Under Tinubu’s Govt
Nigeria Union of Pensioners (NUP) has called on the President-elect, Sen. Bola Tinubu, to create a ministry that will be saddled solely with the responsibility of addressing the plights of retirees in the country.
The South-West zone of NUP made the call after its quarterly meeting in Abeokuta, yesterday.
The Tide source reports that the meeting was attended by chairmen and secretaries of NUP from Ogun, Oyo, Ondo, Osun, Lagos and Ekiti states.
Speaking with newsmen after the meeting, the Zonal Public Relations Officer of NUP in the zone, Olusegun Abatan, said that the creation of the ministry would turn the fortunes of pensioners around in the country.
Abatan called on Tinubu to do more for pensioners when he assumed office as president.
“President Muhammadu Buhari has done quite a lot for pensioners. He really helped them and so we are appealing to Tinubu to please give the matter of pensioners serious attention.
“We want a separate ministry that will be solely addressing matters that have to do with pensioners under the administration of Tinubu,” he said.
Abatan alleged that governors of South-West states were owing pensioners in the zone huge sums as gratuities and pensions.
He urged all the governors in the zone to implement the consequential adjustment and the 35 per cent increment in pensions without further delay.
Abatan particularly cited Ogun, Ekiti and Osun states where he claimed that the gratuities of pensioners were paid last in 2012.
“They are owing arrears of pensions, gratuities and other entitlements, including gratuities and entitlements to the next of kin of some deceased pensioners.
“We want to appeal to our governors to step up their interests in the affairs of pensioners,” he said.
We’ll Defend PDP’s Mandate Secured During The Election In Rivers -Wike
Rivers State governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, says the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the State will defend the mandate that was been given to all of its candidates in the 2023 general election.
The governor noted that soon the various election tribunals will commence sitting where the mandate will be challenged, but the PDP will stand in defence of its candidates to ensure that the mandate is not stolen.
Governor Wike gave the assurance when he spoke at a luncheon organised to celebrate the PDP candidates who won their election and have been presented with their Certificates of Return by the Independent National Electoral Commission.
Those honoured with the luncheon at the Banquet Hall of Government House in Port Harcourt on Wednesday were the Governor-elect, Sir Siminialayi Fubara, Deputy Governor-elect, Prof. Ngozi Odu and other elected Representatives of Rivers State to the National and Rivers State House of Assembly.
Governor Wike pointed to the fierce political battle that was experienced during the general election and that if not for God, the victory that PDP is celebrating today would have eluded it.
The Rivers State governor told those who have been elected to the National Assembly to support every cause that promotes national unity, while placing the interest of the State paramount at all times.
He explained the importance of working in tandem with the State on any cause, whether it is suiting to them or not, but because it is expedient in advancing the interest of the State.
Governor Wike pointed to some Rivers leaders who went to Abuja and betrayed the interest of the state. He said they have become the greatest losers and fallen out of relevance in the State.
The governor also urged the elected representatives to trend with caution and never use their elevated positions to undermine or antagonise existing leadership structure in their various local government areas.
He told them not to abandon those who have contributed sundry efforts to ensure that their emergence at the polls was successful.
Governor Wike scolded Hon. Nwanaka Okpokiri, the member representing Ahoada West State constituency, for working against the success of the PDP in the last general election, but failed.
In his speech, Rivers State Chairman of PDP, Ambassador Desmond Akawor, said there is massive celebration across the State over the victory of the party in the last general election.
He noted as astute the leadership governor Wike provided in leading the party in a fierce electoral battle that has produced youngest governor-elect in Nigeria, Sir Siminalayi Fubara.
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