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We will take additional steps to stem the tide of corruption and leakages in govt. - President Goodluck Jonathan's new year message to Nigerians
| January 01, 2014
In his New Year message to Nigerians, President Goodluck Jonathan, said Nigeria remains a truly blessed country despite several domestic and global challenges Nigerians faced last year. He also pledged to build on the achievements recorded by his administration in 2013. President Jonathan said his administration successfully implemented its agenda for national transformation in priority areas, which included power, rehabilitation and expansion of national infrastructure, agricultural development, education and job creation. He added that about 1.6 million new jobs were created in 2013 as a result of the Federal government's policies and actions but he conceded that more jobs are still needed to support the growing population in Nigeria. He highlighted some achievements of his administration which include: - Tripling allocation for education from N224 billion in 2007 to N634 billion in 2013 - Reduction of inflation to its lowest level since 2008 partly due to higher domestic food production. - Construction of 125 Almajiri schools, and the establishment of three additional Federal Universities in the North, - Completion of the privatization of four power generation companies and 10 power distribution companies - Rehabilitation of 352 laboratories and construction of 72 new libraries in the Federal Unity schools and the 51 Federal and State polytechnics across the country. The President also said that the cost of governance in the country is still too high and needs to be reduced further. He also promised to take additional steps to reduce corruption and leakages in government. He said, “Our administration believes that the cost of governance in the country is still too high and must be further reduced. We will also take additional steps to stem the tide of corruption and leakages. “We have worked hard to curb fraud in the administration of the pension system and the implementation of the petroleum subsidy scheme. We have introduced a Pensions Transition Arrangement Department under a new Director-General. This department will now ensure that those of our pensioners still under the old scheme receive their pensions and gratuities, and are not subjected to fraud. “Prosecution of all those involved in robbing our retired people will continue. The Petroleum Subsidy Scheme is also now being operated under new strict guidelines to tackle previous leakages in the scheme and prevent fraud." “Foreign travel by government personnel will be further curtailed. This directive shall apply to all Ministries, Departments and Agencies of the Federal Government. Our strategy to curb leakages will increasingly rely on introducing the right technologies such as biometrics and digitising government payments.” “Whatever challenges we may have faced, whatever storms we may have confronted and survived, Nigeria remains a truly blessed country, a country of gifted men and women who continue to distinguish themselves in all spheres of life, a country whose diversity remains a source of strength.”

(1) Comment


Comments

"The views and opinions expressed in these comment(s) or article(s) do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of NGEX, its partners or its affiliates."
OMOTAYO, J. A.    Accra, GHANA    January 02, 2014
Happy New Year to all Nigerians. It is heart warming that Mr. Jonathan has promised to curtail foreign trips and mitigate wastages in public fund. It is also interesting that education is to be given a better priority in his administration. I am most happy that there was no polio victim in 2013.

Finally, I am excited that agriculture is being given a top priority. A nation that cannot feed her citizens is not worthy of her existence.
The desire of government to cut down on running cost is good but this will be better achieved if political office holders' (executives, law-makers, ministers, advisers, chairmen / chairpersons) remunerations are cut by at least 50%. I urge Mr. Jonathan to think in this direction. It is a Herculean task. There will be resistance from all the quarters affected.

If Mr. Jonathan can achieve this remunerations reduction even up till 2015, he would have re-directed our national part to that which is sustainable. I wish him all the best of luck. God bless Nigeria.
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