‘Nigeria, not a cursed, poor country’ – Tinubu tasks governors on national devt

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Woo opposition for Nigeria's unity, Tinubu tells APC governors

 

President Bola Tinubu has tasked the All Progressives Congress (APC) governors to design and implement policies that prioritise all Nigerians.

He also charged them to always consider the national interest above political affiliations.

The president gave the task at a meeting with members of the Progressive Governors Forum (PGF) at the State House in Abuja on Friday.

He said that development policies would only find full relevance in people’s lives when there is inclusivity, ownership and sustainability.

Tinubu enjoined the governors to avoid divisiveness by working towards healing and unifying the country through a collective national vision.

The president said Nigeria has no business with a dearth of quality education and world-class health facilities with its blessed human, natural and material resources.

He said the entire financial system of the country would be re-engineered for inclusivity, effectiveness and efficiency.

“We have no reason to be poor. Looking back on where we are coming from, where we have been, why we are facing infrastructural decay, a lack of quality and comprehensive education, as well as a lack of health facilities. We are not a cursed country, but blessed,’’ the president said.

Tinubu also asked the governors to come up with a framework that would implement the school feeding programme more comprehensively and successful across all states of the federation.

He urged them to take into consideration the peculiarities of each locality towards having all children in school.

“We have children of school age who are out of school. The way to promote education is to get all governors, including the opposition governors, involved in the school feeding programme.

“We should not measure the children as statistics. We should measure their return to classrooms as our achievement. We should see economic growth in terms of value and empowerment. We should set up a committee to look into the methods,” he said.

Besides, the president said the school feeding programme would encourage more investments in agriculture, particularly in livestock farming and dairy.

He said that former Kano State governor and APC Chairman, Dr Abdullahi Ganduje, had already worked on a proposal that would be shared for input and implementation.

Tinubu equally congratulated the Governor of Borno, Prof. Babagana Zulum, for restoring irrigation systems that provide water for the year-long cultivation of crops.

On security, the president said the deployment of forest guards was being considered, with better training, modern technological gadgets and weapons to strengthen security.

He added that the solid mineral and marine economic sectors would also be secured by special police.

“We have a big marine economy, and I do not see why we should not have the marine police. We will have the same in solid minerals to keep the scavengers away.

“I am ready to invest in security. We will buy our minerals and keep them in reserves, especially gold, which will be effective in our foreign exchange reserve,’’ he said.

Responding, the Governor of Imo and Chairman of the PGF, Hope Uzodinma, thanked the president for involving governors in the design and implementation of policies, as well as for intervening with financial support in the states.

“We will continue to support you as your able ambassadors, willing ambassadors, and capable ambassadors,’’ Uzodinma said.

 

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