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Nigeria needs a kind-hearted leader like Buhari in 2023 – Umahi



The Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi, Monday expressed hope that God would give Nigeria a kind-hearted leader like President Muhammadu Buhari in 2023.

The governor, who spoke with State House correspondents at the end of a meeting with President Buhari in Abuja, said people of South-East are grateful to the President over his great works in the region.

He commended Buhari over some landmark projects including the Second Niger Bridge and the eastern corridor of the railway line among others in the South-East.

He stressed that the country needs a leader with a good heart like Buhari.

Umahi said: “I came to see Mr. President. One is to thank him very highly for a number of mega projects that he is doing in the South-East. The Second Niger Bridge is fast becoming a reality. Each time we visit that bridge location it is always like a dream.

“So we the people of the South-East are very grateful to Mr. President for this. We also thank him for the award of the Eastern corridor of the railway line. This is a project that is going to fast-track the commercial activities of our people.

“I recall that when I was in school, I used to join train from my state, Ebonyi, and then get up to Maiduguri where my brothers were staying for my holidays.

“Mr. President is about restoring that hope. We are deeply very grateful. But I also reminded Mr. President that one of his cardinal objectives is to integrate the South-East or the state capitals, but in putting together the project through South-East that the capital of Ebonyi State, which is Abakaliki and capital of Anambra State, which is Awka, were omitted.

“And I reminded Mr. President that the South-East governors had requested that I write which I did, but not yet approved by the Honourable Minister of Transport, which Mr. President said he will find out why they were omitted in the first place.

“I am very, very hopeful that Mr. President is going to give approval to those two locations. Let me also mention the fertiliser presidential initiative which has helped the country Nigeria so much in food sufficiency.

“Let me point out that without the effort of Mr. President, through this fertiliser initiative and other programmes in the agricultural sector, it would have been a very difficult time for this country.

That project is supposed to produce a large set of granules to enable us to produce fertilisers to serve the South-South, South-East, and part of North- Central.

“Mr. President has already approved the funds and released to Solid Mineral Development Fund. But part of the requirement is that there must be SPV integration or private sector initiative. They have applied to Mr. President for approval through the Chief of Staff. So we had to remind Mr. President.

“Lastly, four years back, Mr. President was in Ebonyi State about November to commission a number of projects and lay the foundation stone for others. I reminded Mr. President that we are expecting him four years later, which would be November for him to come to Ebonyi State. The last time he spent one night but this time we are asking him to spend three nights.

“We have over 20 different projects that we consider good enough for Mr. President to commission. We have completed the Muhammadu Buhari light tunnel bridge complex, the first of its kind in Africa for Mr. President to commission.

“We have gotten to the stage of completing the best medical center, King David University of Medical Sciences, the best in Africa. We have completed the largest mall, the most beautiful mall you can see anywhere in West Africa.

READ ALSO: Buhari to commission 20 projects in Ebonyi

“We have completed additional six twin flyover bridges, well decorated and beautiful. We want Mr. President to commission it. We want Mr. President to commission the St. Margeret International Market, the largest market in West Africa.

“We have over 200-kilometre concrete roads in Ebonyi state, some of them federal roads and some concrete roads. We have over 1000 kilometres of road completed, since my first tenure. Of course, the list can be unexhaustive here. Even the three agric Industrial clusters are ready for Mr. President to commission.

“We also have a number of ongoing projects. Most of them will terminate at the end of 2021. Like the International Airport which Mr. President approved two years ago. Now we are the first in the whole of Nigeria to build an international airport runway with concrete that is going to be ready for Mr. President to lay the foundation stone. I will invite him to commission it next year.

“We have the first flight about May 29, 2022. We also have a number of road projects, especially the 199 kilometres of Abakaliki ring road, of which the state government has completed with 53 kilometres of it.

“And of course, the limestone granules is Mr. President’s project and he has to lay the foundation stone.

“But I think after Lagos and Abuja, Ebonyi remains, another state with the highest numbers of flyover and Ebonyi Airport remains the largest after Lagos and Abuja.

“So this is why we came and I’m happy that Mr. President is quite disposed towards visiting us again.

“I will continue to say that power rests in the hands of God. And God will also give us the next President who has a good heart like President Buhari for the good of this country.

“Nigeria needs a leader like the President in the future.”

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