President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday said that his government had recorded notable achievements in the course of implementing its priority objectives and establishing a solid foundation for future success.
He stated this during his nationwide Democracy Day Speech, noting that the 2020 celebration marked 21 years of uninterrupted civil administration in Nigeria.
“In my 2019 Democracy Day address, I promised to frontally address the nation’s daunting challenges, especially insecurity, economy and corruption. I, therefore, find it necessary to give an account of my stewardship on this day.
“We have recorded notable achievements in the course of implementing our nine priority objectives and are establishing a solid foundation for future success….
He said on the economic front that the government objectives had remained to stabilize the macroeconomy, achieve agricultural and food security, ensure energy sufficiency in power and petroleum products, develop infrastructure, fight corruption and improve governance.
Noting that Nigeria had witnessed eleven quarters of consecutive GDP growth since exiting recession, he added that the GDP grew from 1.91 per cent in 2018 to 2.27 per cent in 2019 but declined to 1.87 per cent in the first quarter of 2020 as a result of the decline in global economic activities due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Every single economy in the world has suffered a decline. Ours has been relatively moderate,” he said.
On what the government has done to stabilize the economy, he said the Monetary Authority took steps to build the external reserves which resulted in improved liquidity in the foreign exchange market.
“The external reserves grew from $33.42 billion on April 29th 2020 to about $36.00 billion in May, 2020 which is enough to finance seven months of import commitments.”
In the area of security, Buhari said government remained unshaken in its resolve to protect “our national infrastructure including on-shore and off-shore oil installations, secure our territorial waters and end piracy in the Gulf of Guinea.”
On the disturbing issues of terrorism and banditory, he said ending insurgency, banditry and other forms of criminality across the nation was being accorded appropriate priorities and the men and women of the Armed Forces of Nigeria have considerably downgraded such threats across all geo-political zones.
“All the Local Governments that were taken over by the Boko Haram insurgents in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa have long been recovered and are now occupied by indigenes of these areas, who were hitherto forced to seek a living in areas far from their ancestral homes.”
On corruption, he said that the anti-corruption agencies have secured more than 1,400 convictions and also recovered funds in excess of N800 billion.
“These monies are being ploughed into development and infrastructure projects.”
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