Pan Niger Delta Leader, Edwin Clark on Tuesday dismissed the Independence anniversary broadcast of President Muhammadu Buhari as not inspiring.
Speaking on Channels TV Sunrise Daily, the elder statesman said, “There is nothing new in Mr President’s speech.
“We have heard all these before, the increase in power, corruption fighting back. I expected that the President would dwell more on the challenge of insecurity in this country.”
Buhari had in his Independence day broadcast said stated, “Our ongoing N500bn Special Intervention Programme continues to target vulnerable groups, through the home-grown School Feeding Programme, Government Economic Empowerment Programme, N-Power, Job Creation Programme, loans for traders and artisans, Conditional Cash Transfers to the poorest families and social housing scheme.
“To institutionalise these impactful programmes, we created the Ministry for Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development which shall consolidate and build on our achievements to date. To the beneficiaries of these programmes, I want to reassure you that our commitment to social inclusion will only increase.”
The President also said the newly set up Economic Advisory Council would advise him on inclusive and sustainable macroeconomic, fiscal and monetary policies.
He also said that as of June this year, total capital releases from the 2018 budget, stood at N1.74trn to underscore the commitment of his administration to build infrastructure and take Nigerians out of poverty.
He noted that for change to happen, all Nigerians must support him and think like him to get the country from the old ways of doing things, adding that, “In the last four years, we have combated the terrorist scourge of Boko Haram. We owe a debt of gratitude to our gallant men and women in arms, through whose efforts we have been able to achieve the present results. We are also grateful to our neighbours and allies – within the region and across the world – who have supported us on this front”.
There have also been comments in reaction to the live broadcast of President Buhari’s Independence anniversary speech posted on Opera News. See some of the reactions below:
QueenDiva: “All we need is justice and tranquility in our country. we’re tired of hearing one same promises everytime and nothing happens. we need to step up and fight for what is right. God bless us all and bless the federal republic of nigeria.”
JohnsonSalifuObaje, “please you people should start working on roads and give us stable power supply. you also have to be fair in tackling insecurities of the country, so help us God”.
IshmaelKeelechi, “Mr President, your government hasn’t been fair in the fight against corruption as only corrupt individuals in the opposition has so far been dealt with.Gross inflation of food and other necessities for the common man. 59years seem like its not working. Let’s try something else,biko.”
Obri, “No clear focus as usual”.
SylvesterOkhaifoh, “I don’t even have light and I will not waste my money to fuel my generator to watch and listen to a president that I will not even understand what he’s talking, no need.”
NwaikiriDerrick, “My expectations towards Mr president is that he shuld boast the economy growth of the nation and create enably environment for the youths of dis country with skills and jobs to dose who ar jobless, and he shuld meant it and not for merely”.
Meanwhile, the United States’ President, Donald Trump, and prominent Nigerians assessed prospects of Nigeria as it celebrates its 59th independence anniversary Tuesday, stating that the United States share common goals with Nigeria.
Trump, who congratulated President Muhammadu Buhari on Nigeria’s 59th independence anniversary, described the country as one of America’s strongest partners in Africa.
The US President, in a statement in Washington on Monday, said Nigeria and America shared common goals of expanding trade and growing their economic relationship.
He said, “We are allies in the global battle against terrorism, and we want to see Boko Haram and ISIS-West Africa driven out of the region and other insurgencies like them dismantled.
“The United States welcomes efforts by your administration to diversify opportunities for your talented, creative, and hardworking people to the benefit of both our countries, Africa, and the world.”
The American President said he was pleased that the vice presidents of the two nations were building on the longstanding history of cooperation between the US and Nigeria.
But at home, Nigerian politicians and other prominent Nigerians disagreed on the achievements of the country and its prospects.
All is not well with Nigeria – Atiku
The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in February 23, 2019 election, Atiku Abubakar, painted a gloomy picture of the country and said all was not well with it.
The former Vice-President, in his message on Nigeria’s 59th independence anniversary, said the nation’s founding fathers could not have imagined that 59 years after independence, free press would be endangered in the largest black nation in the world.
He also said they could not have imagined that the judiciary would be under attacks, and that youths and activists, who should ordinarily be the future of Nigeria, would be facing threats of arrest and intimidation.
He, however, called on Nigerians to work for the development of the country and insist that no one in the country, no matter how highly placed, should be bigger than the laws of the land.
Atiku stated, “I could call for prayers, as others would indeed call for today. I could also call on Nigerians to show more understanding, as indeed many have said in the past and will undoubtedly say again today. But I am mindful of the fact that the time for rhetoric has long since passed and now is the time for all lovers of Nigeria to take concrete steps to aid Nigeria’s progress, by not just praying and showing understanding, but also to take democratic action to ensure that the ideals of our founding fathers – unity and faith, peace and progress – are not set aside on the altar of tyranny.
“All is not well when judges are persecuted for enforcing the constitutionally guaranteed fundamental human rights of Nigerian citizens. All is not well when Nigeria is now officially the world headquarters for extreme poverty and out of schoolchildren, yet the cost of maintaining those in government continues to grow, while the needs of the governed are not being met. And certainly, all is not well when the media cannot freely express itself without the fear that those who wield the big stick would use it on them for saying things as they are.”
Also, the National Chairman of the PDP, Uche Secondus, said Nigeria was dying under the watch of Buhari and the ruling All Progressives Congress.
In a statement by his media aide, Ike Abonyi, Secondus said every index at 59 years of Nigeria showed that the country was going down. He stated that only truth and nothing else would save Nigerians.
He said, “What happened in the country last February at the presidential election remains a sad reminder of the damage this administration has done to our democratic psyche as a nation.”
Buhari has done well – APC
But the APC, in its message lauded the President, saying despite inheriting challenges he had made huge marks in the country.
The party, which stated this in a statement by the National Publicity Secretary, Lanre Issa-Onilu, said Nigerians were better together than being apart.
It stated, “In spite of the inherited and our current challenges, President Muhammadu Buhari administration has made commendable strides on so many fronts, most significantly the fight against graft, diversifying and revamping the economy, curbing insurgency and emerging crimes, promoting positive values in our national life, strengthening our democratic institutions and processing and achieving a respectable international standing.”
We will address challenges – Senate
Also, the Senate pledged to support Nigeria’s efforts at achieving greatness through quality representation and making of relevant laws at all times.
The upper chamber made the pledge in a statement by its Chairman, Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Senator Adedayo Adeyeye.
The Senate noted there were challenges facing the nation, but its members would work as a team to address the obstacles hindering the nation’s progress.
Challenges, necessary steps to greatness – Senate President
On his part, the President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, said that the current challenges confronting the country were necessary process to attain greatness.
Lawan, in a statement, noted that the challenges were insurmountable. He said, “We must not waver or be discouraged by the challenges of nation-building.”
Pray for your leaders, Gbajabiamila urges Nigerians
Also, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, urged Nigerians to remain united and pray for their leaders.
In a statement in Abuja, the Speaker said Nigeria had come a long way as one indivisible entity, which every citizen must work to protect. He added that at a time like this, prayers and unity of purpose would help ensure the country remain one.
Focus on solutions to Nigeria’s woes, CAN tells leaders
Also, the Christian Association of Nigeria said that godliness, impeccable leadership, patriotism and responsible following were the panaceas for the nation’s woes.
The CAN President, Rev. Samson Ayokunle, who said this in a message on Monday, in commemoration of Nigeria’s 59th independence anniversary, called for a change of heart and attitude.
He said, “We all need a change of heart in Nigeria, a new life, so to say. The leaders and the led must be ready for a new heart. We must allow God to change us; He is always willing to do that but he will not force it on us.”
Ours is history of dashed hopes, some successes – Ohanaeze
The apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, in a statement by its National Deputy Publicity Secretary, Mr. Chuks Ibegbu, said although Nigeria had attained political independence, it had yet to build the nation of “our dream.”