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2019 Presidency: No alternative to Buhari – Agu

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2019 Presidency: No alternative to Buhari – Agu

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Dickson Okafor

A pressure group, Forever One Nigeria Initiative (FONI), has backed President Muhammadu Buhari for a second term in office. National President of the group Chief Peter Agu speaks on why the group endorsed Buhari.

Nigerians are hungry and they look up to election year when politicians come to buy their conscience, don’t you think it would be tempting to resist such offer next year?

Yes, it will be difficult for a hungry man to resist monetary inducement put to them by politicians. Poverty is a strong weapon deployed by our leaders to deliberately bring the masses on their knees. It is unfortunate situation we find ourselves and we cannot allow this to continue. On our part, we are sensitising the electorate against mortgaging their conscience for a token. So far, people are responding overwhelmingly to our campaign as they are beginning to realise the importance of participatory democracy.

READ ALSO: Nigeria’s democracy is improving steadily, says President Buhari

Equally of note is that, because politics is too important for the wellbeing of the people, it cannot be left in hands of politicians alone. So, there is need for the people to participate in the political process. There is hunger in the land as a result of bad governance of previous administrations and that is why we must join hands with the present administration to right the wrong done to our commonwealth by voting for credible individuals irrespective political affiliations.

The Buhari-led government has been accused of impoverishing Nigerians, why do you want Buhari to continue in office when they now have alternative in former Vice President and Presidential candidate of the PDP, Atiku Abubakar?

Nigerians especially those in the rural areas are not aware of the achievements of this government. This informed the decision of FONI to initiate the nation-wide sensitisation programme. As leader of the group, it behooves on us to tell the direction of policies of the Buhari administration. This becomes necessary because some of the achievements of this government are not made known to majority of Nigerians because President Buhari and his media handlers don’t believe in the old order when projects are constructed on billboards and on the pages of newspapers. These achievements are very sensitive to the feeling of the common people. So, those of us who know how much effort President Buhari and the APC are putting in to revive our ailing economy, decided to come together and showcase Buhari’s achievements. It is a two way thing because we feel the impulse of the people and also pass it across to the government who will in turn increase capacity of what they are doing to impact lives of the citizenry. With the improvement in the rating of doing business, Nigeria, no doubt under President Buhari has done well. The ban on some items created opportunity for producers of those items to thrive especially in agriculture. Before now for instance, the need of these items were not met locally but the ban has triggered local production of the items.

Recently, the Minister of Agriculture was on air to inform Nigerians that over N165 million has been given to the Ahmadu Bello University for procurement of maize in order to have high production in terms of per hectare. What government is trying to do is to ensure farmers labour less and earn more through smart farming. The value chain of this farming method will lead to more animal protein because the animals will have enough to eat. The market is there, we don’t have to look for market. So, the farmers are happy because they are getting reward for their efforts. Yes, government is looking into other areas on how to improve the living standard of the people.

It is easy to bring a house down, but rebuilding it could be painstaking. The last three and half years have been very difficult for common people in the country. This is sensitive and it is the sensitivity that made government to begin to invest more on infrastructure and social welfare which include N-Power programmes.

So, FONI is sensitising the people on all these policies and inform them to be careful of those they listen to because some are out to rubbish the efforts of the Buhari administration.

Are you saying Atiku who was Vice President when Nigeria had her foreign debt written off cannot find an answer to our economic problems?

The question begging for an answer is, who put Nigeria in the present economic mess? PDP-led administration for 16 years and Atiku was part of that administration. Voting for Atiku is like asking PDP to come back and I’m sure Nigerians will not make such a costly mistake in 2019. So, this is why we embark on the sensitisation targeted at the rural areas and states and it is driven by well meaning Nigerians who believe in what the government is doing. So, it is difficult to do all at once. We have done it in the North-East and the next is North-Central. The high level of corruption that bedeviled Nigeria is what government is fighting hard to end or reduce. Government is eager to recover these monies. President Buhari is the best thing that has happened to Nigeria because all the monies recovered so far has been plunged into the 2018 budget.

READ ALSO: BPE to support 2018 budget with N300bn privatisation proceeds –Okoh

The post 2019 Presidency: No alternative to Buhari – Agu appeared first on The Sun Nigeria.

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CATHOLIC WORLD

Killing of Christians: Buhari lied to Trump – CAN fumes

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Killing of Christians: Buhari lied to Trump - CAN fumes

The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has reacted to President Muhammadu Buhari’s revelation of his conversation with United States President, Donald Trump, on the massacre of Christians in Nigeria, saying President Buhari was economical with the truth.

President Buhari had on Tuesday, revealed that at the heat of the bloody clashes between herdsmen and farmers in Nigeria, the United States President, Donald Trump, unequivocally accused him of killing Christians.

Buhari said these in his closing remarks at the two-day ministerial performance review retreat held at the Presidential Villa, Abuja on Tuesday.

At a point, the President digressed from his prepared speech and narrated his encounter with Trump on the bloody clashes.

He said he managed to explain to the American leader that the clashes were not about ethnicity or religion.

He said, “I believe I was about the only African among the less developed countries the President of United States invited.

“When I was in his office, only myself and himself, only God is my witness, he looked at me in the face, and asked, ‘Why are you killing Christians?’

“I wonder, if you were the person, how you will react. I hope what I was feeling inside did not betray my emotion, so I told him that the problem between the cattle rearers and farmers, I know is older than me not to talk of him. I think I am a couple of years older than him.

“With climate change and population growth and the culture of the cattle rearers, if you have 50 cows and they eat grass, any root, to your water point, then they will follow it. It doesn’t matter whose farm it is.

“The First Republic set of leadership was the most responsible leadership we ever had. I asked the Minister of Agriculture to get a gazette of the early 60s which delineated the cattle route where they used meager resources then to put earth dams, wind mills even sanitary department.

“So, any cattle rearers that allowed his cattle to go to somebody’s farm would be arrested, taken before the court. The farmer would be called to submit his bill and if he couldn’t pay, the cattle would be sold, but subsequent leaders, the VVIPs (very important persons) encroached on the cattle routes. They took over the cattle rearing areas.

“So, I tried and explained to him (Trump) that this has got nothing to do with ethnicity or religion. It is a cultural thing.”

However, CAN’s Vice President and Chairman of the association in Kaduna State, John Hayab, was not impressed with Buhari’s submission, saying “Buhari and his government will never stop from amusing us with their tales by moonlight because what is happening in Zamfara, Sokoto, Katsina, Birnin Gwari, Southern Kaduna, Taraba, Plateau and others cannot be described as a cultural thing.

He told Punch correspondent in an interview: “President Buhari’s weak story about his conversation with President Donald Trump further confirms why his government does not care about the killings in our country by calling them cultural things.

“Just this (Tuesday) evening, I received a report from the Kaduna Baptist Conference President about the number of their members that have been killed by bandits in Kaduna State from January 2020 to date to be 105 and our President will call it a cultural thing? All we can say is may God save our Nigeria.”

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NATIONAL NEWS

CAMA: Bishop blasts Christian lawmakers

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CAMA: Bishop blasts Christian lawmakers

The Catholic Bishop of Nsukka, Most Rev. Godfrey Onah, has blamed Christians in the National Assembly (NASS), for the passage of the 2020 Companies and Allied Matters Bill (CAMA), signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari recently.

Bishop Onah, said in a remark during the Sunday Mass that if Christians in NASS had opposed the bill, it would not have been passed into law.

President Muhammadu Buhari had on Aug. 7, signed the CAMA bill into law, giving provision for religious bodies and charity organizations to be regulated by the registrar of the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), and a supervising minister.

“The question many Christians have been asking is, where were Christian legislators during the debate of this bill and its passage in the National Assembly?

“Because, if they had opposed this bill on the floor of the house, it would not have been passed and sent to the president for assent.

“I blame Christian legislators for doing nothing and allowing the passage of the 2020 CAMA Act,” he said.

“When I say that Christians are too divided and too selfish, don’t forget that the second in command in this country is a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, a professor of Law and a pastor.”

Onah, however, wondered what the Federal Government wanted to achieve in monitoring how the finances of churches in the country are managed when it contributed no dime to the church, NAN reports.

“Government should focus and monitor its ministries, agencies and other government institutions where it budgets billions of Naira annually and not church offerings.

“Had it been that the government gave allocations to churches and decided to monitor its usage, nobody will question the government,” he said.

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NATIONAL NEWS

Nigerians spit fire over fuel, electricity prices hike

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Increasing Fuel and Electricity Prices

Anger and condemnations, across the country, have continued to trail last week’s take off, of new increases in pump price of petroleum products and electricity tariffs, as directed by Federal Government.

Recall that the Petroleum Products Marketing Company (PPMC) official, D.O. Abalaka announced on Wednesday September 3, on behalf of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) that the new price of petroleum is now N151.56k per litre instead of N149 – N150 per litre which it was previously.

The new electricity tariff which the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) tagged “Service Reflective Tariff” has also come into effect. It requires consumers to pay N53.87 – N66.422 per kwh of electricity.

Outraged consumers of fuel and electricity have therefore warned government to get ready for collision with the masses if it fails to rescind these new prices.

Those who have expressed outrage over the new prices regimes include, the Organized Labour, Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), Nigerian main opposition political party, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Nigeria Employers Consultative Association (NECA) and the Major Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN).

Others are: Petroleum Products Retail Outlets Owners Association of Nigeria, the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) and the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce (NACCIMA).

The NLC said, “The frequent fuel price increase will no longer be accepted. We will not allow Nigerians fall victim of government ineptitude and negligence to make the country self-sufficient in terms of refining petroleum products at home.”

On its part, the PDP has described the price hike as “callous, cruel and punishing” and demanded an immediate reversal to avert a national crisis.

The All Industrial Global sees the incessant increase as a confirmation that deregulation means just price increase.

“This is unacceptable! Under a pandemic, we should put money in the pockets of citizens to revive collapsed livelihoods and preserve lives.” In its reaction, NECA said it has always urged Federal Government to adopt deregulation policy in the oil and gas downstream sector.

The MOMAN in its statement insists that monthly price variation of fuel was no longer sustainable. It urged PPRA to adopt quarterly price mechanism which would save the market the hassles of price volatility. The statements by IPMAN and NACCIMA also followed along the same line that the hike “…serves only to increase the severity and duration of the looming economic recession.”

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