SUNDAY ODE, Abuja
President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday told his newly appointed ministers that he would rely on their competence to implement the policies and programmes his administration this second term as he plans to lay a solid foundation for the uplift of Nigerians from poverty.
The ministers who began a two-day retreat Monday at the Presidential Villa, Abuja are expected to be sworn in on Wednesday after they would have been assigned portfolios.
Speaking at the opening of the event the President admonished the Ministers who had been chosen to represent their respective states as a constitutional imperative, to work as a team for the next four years to chart a course for the country.
He told the ministers that his first term has essentially tackled his three-pronged issues of corruption, security, and repositioning the economy, urging them to key into the implementation of policies and programmes of government for the next level.
“We must work as a team. Working as a team demands that we know what the next person is doing. You must open communication with your colleagues. Lack of communication leads to lack of cooperation and sub-optimal performance.
“First – we have rolled back the frontiers of terrorism; we are actively addressing other challenges such as kidnappings, farmer-herder violence, improving the safety of our roads, railways, air traffic and fire control capacities.
“Second – we are steadily turning the economy round through investment in agriculture and manufacturing, shoring up our foreign reserves, curbing inflation and improving the country’s infrastructure.
“Third – on corruption, we have recovered hundreds of billions of stolen assets and are actively pursuing control measures to tackle leakages in public resources. We will not let up in fighting corruption.
“Our Administration’s eight years will have laid the grounds for lifting 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in 10 years. This outcome will fundamentally shift Nigeria’s trajectory and place us among the World’s Great Nations.”
While charging them to also ensure that Agencies under their Ministries are effective, efficient and accountable in the discharge of their responsibilities, President Buhari said the Ministers will be responsible for the development and implementation of policies, programmes and projects in various Ministries, Departments and Agencies in line with Government priorities.
He noted that, “working as a team to advance to the Next Level” demands that we know what the next person is doing. You must open communications with your colleagues. Lack of communication leads to lack of cooperation and sub-optimal performance.”
Further, President Buhari said his administration was aware of the looming demographic potential of the country, adding, that by average estimates, its population stood close to 200 million, noting that by 2050, UN estimates put Nigeria third globally behind only India and China with our projected population at 411 million.
This, the President said was a “frightening prospect but only if the citizens sit idly by and expect handouts from so-called development partners.
“The solution to our problems lies within us,” he said.
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