Government

October 1st, 2020 Independence Day Address by His Excellency, Muhammadu Buhari, President of The Federal Republic Of Nigeria

Fellow Nigerians

I speak to you today as your President and fellow citizen on this epoch occasion of our country’s 60th independence Anniversary. As President, I wish to renew my appreciation to Nigerians for entrusting me with your hopes and aspirations for a better and greater Nigeria.

2. Today, it is my unique privilege to re-commit myself to the service of this great country of great people with profound diversities and opportunities. We are bound by destiny to be the largest and greatest black nation on earth.

3. At this stage in our nationhood it is important that we reflect how we got here to enable us work TOGETHER to get to where we aspire to be as a strong indivisible nation, united in hope and equal in opportunity.

4. On October 1st 1960 when Prime Minister Alhaji Abubakar Tafawa Balewa received the constitutional instruments symbolizing Nigeria’s independence, he expressed his wish that having acquired our rightful status as an independent sovereign nation, history would record that the building of our nation proceeded at the wisest pace.

5. This optimism was anchored on the peaceful planning, full and open consultation and harmonious cooperation with the different groups which culminated in Nigeria emerging as a country without bitterness and bloodshed.

6. Our founding fathers understood the imperative of structuring a National identity using the power of the state and worked towards unification of Nigerians in a politically stable and viable entity.

7. That philosophy guided the foundation that was laid for our young nation of 45 million people with an urban population of approximately 7million occupying an area of 910,768 square kilometers. These demographics led to development challenges for which major efforts were made to overcome.

8. Today, we grapple with multiple challenges with a population exceeding 200million occupying the same land mass but 52% residing in urban areas.

9. Sixty years of nationhood provides an opportunity to ask ourselves questions on the extent to which we have sustained the aspirations of our founding fathers. Where did we do the right things? Are we on course? If not where did we stray and how can we remedy and retrace our steps?

10. Upon attaining independence, Nigeria’s growth trajectory was anchored on policies and programmes that positively impacted on all sectors of the economy. However, this journey was cut short by the 30-months of civil war.

11. We came out of the civil war with a focus on reconstruction, rehabilitation and reconciliation that enabled the country to put in place world class development structures and a strengthened public service that well served the government. This positive trajectory continued with a return to democratic government which was truncated by another round of military rule.

12. For a cumulative 29 of our 60 years existence as a nation, we have been under military rule.

13. My summary of our journey so far as a nation is necessary to appropriately chart where we need to go and how to get there TOGETHER.

14. Today, I am aware that our economy along with every single economy in the world is in crisis. We still face security challenges in parts of the country, while our society suffers from a high loss of moral rectitude which is driven by unbridled craving for political control.

15. An underlying cause of most of the problems we have faced as a nation is our consistent harping on artificially contrived fault-lines that we have harboured and allowed unnecessarily to fester.

16. In addition, institutions such as civil service, police, the judiciary, the military all suffered from a general decline.

17. We need to begin a sincere process of national healing and this anniversary presents a genuine opportunity to eliminate old and outworn perceptions that are always put to test in the lie they always are.

18. The stereotype of thinking of ourselves as coming from one part of the country before seeing ourselves as Nigerians is a key starting point to project us on the road to our deserved nation’s evolution and integration.

19. To start this healing process, we are already blessed with the most important asset any nation requires for such – OUR PEOPLE – and this has manifested globally in the exploits of Nigerians in many fields.

20. It has been demonstrated time and time again that Nigerians in the diaspora frequently excel in science, technology, medicine, sports, arts and many other fields.

21. Similarly, the creativity, ingenuity and resourcefulness of the Nigerian at home have resulted in globally recognized endeavours.

22. I am convinced that if we pursue our aspirations TOGETHER we would be able to achieve whatever we desire. That informed our adopting the theme TOGETHER to mark this epochal event.

23. Together we can change our condition for the better and more importantly, together we can do much more for ourselves and for our country.

24. I chose the path of self-reflection because this is what I do on a daily basis and I must confess that at most times, I always felt the need for a collective reflection as I know that the foundation for a solid future which this administration is laying can only be sustainable if there is a collective commitment by Nigerians.

25. Nigeria is not a country for Mr. President, any ruling or opposition party but a country for all of us and we must play our part, irrespective of challenges we face, to make this country what we desire.

26. To achieve this, we must focus our minds, TOGETHER as a people, on ways of resolving the identified critical challenges that underlie our present state. These include:
a. Evolving and sustaining a democratic culture that leaves power in the hands of the people;
b. Supporting the enthronement of the rule of law, demanding accountability of elected representatives and contributing to good governance;
c. Increasing our commitment to peaceful co-existence in a peaceful, secure and united Nigeria;
d. Harnessing and Optimizing our tremendous human and natural resources to attain our goal of being in the top twenty economies of the world and in the process;
e. Lifting 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in 10 years;
f. Strengthening institutions to make them stronger in protecting National Interests; and
g. Imbibing tolerance in diversity.

27. I am a firm believer in transparent, free, fair and credible elections as has been demonstrated during my period as a democratically elected President.

28. The recent build-up and eventual outcome of the Edo State elections should encourage Nigerians that it is my commitment to bequeath to this country processes and procedures that would guarantee that the people’s votes count.

29. The problems with our electoral process are mainly human induced as desperate desire for power leads to desperate attempts to gain power and office.

30. Democracy, the world over and as I am pursuing in Nigeria, recognizes the power of the people. However, if some constituencies choose to bargain off their power, they should be prepared for denial of their rights.

31. This call is made more urgent if we realise that even after a transparent, free, fair and credible election, desperation leads to compromising the judiciary to upturn legitimate decisions of the people.

32. It is necessary to, therefore support the enthronement of the rule of law by avoiding actions which compromise the judiciary.

33. Fellow Nigerians, our history has shown that we are a people that have the capacity to live peacefully with one another.

34. As a government, we remain committed to our constitutional oath of securing the lives and properties of the citizenry. I, however, call on the citizenry to also support government by providing the necessary community level intelligence in addressing these challenges.

35. In moving forward together, it is important to strengthen our economy to provide sustainable means of livelihood for as many Nigerians as possible so as to eradicate absolute poverty from our midst.

36. I want to re-emphasize my dedication and commitment, a dedication and commitment that propelled my public service career and informed my quest to continually seek for an opportunity to improve the lives of Nigerians, set the country on the path of prosperity and lead the country to a better future.

37. This administration has been focused on rebuilding and laying the foundations for a sustainable Nigeria. Of course, we have met and are still meeting the challenges inherent in any rebuilding initiative – more so that of a nation like Nigeria that has undergone avoidable levels of deprivation – but can be surmounted if we all work together.

38. I wish to re-iterate that our people and our spirit of excellence remains our most important asset.

39. In this wise, the need to return to our age-old ethical and high moral values would be necessary and this informed my launching of the National Ethics and Integrity Policy on Monday 28th September, 2020.

40. The policy would not implement itself and the first contact of the visibility of its implementation is the Public Service whose on-going reforms would be expected to be sustainable and give a radical re-direction in providing services to all Nigerians.

41. Fellow Nigerians, in addition to public health challenges of working to contain the spread of the Coronavirus, we have suffered a significant drop in our foreign exchange earnings and internal revenues due to 40 per cent drop in oil prices and steep drop in economic activities, leading to a 60 per cent drop in government revenue.

42. Our government is grappling with the dual challenge of saving lives and livelihoods in face of drastically reduced resources.

43. In this regard, sustaining the level of petroleum prices is no longer possible. The government, since coming into office has recognized the economic argument for adjusting the price of petroleum. But the social argument about the knock-on effect of any adjustment weighed heavily with the government.

44. Accordingly, in the last three years, we have introduced unprecedented measures in support of the economy and to the weakest members of our society in the shape of:
a. Tradermoni
b. Farmermoni
c. School Feeding Programme
d. Job creation efforts
e. Agricultural intervention programmes

45. No government in the past did what we are doing with such scarce resources. We have managed to keep things going in spite of the disproportionate spending on security. Those in the previous Governments from 1999 – 2015 who presided over the near destruction of the country have now the impudence to attempt to criticize our efforts.

46. In the circumstances, a responsible government must face realities and take tough decisions.

47. Petroleum prices in Nigeria are to be adjusted. We sell now at N161 per litre. A comparison with our neighbours will illustrate the point;

a. Chad which is an oil producing country charges N362 per litre
b. Niger, also an oil producing country sells 1 litre at N346.
c. In Ghana, another oil producing country, petroleum pump price is N326 per litre.

48. Further afield, Egypt charges N211 per litre. Saudi Arabia charges N168 per litre. It makes no sense for oil to be cheaper in Nigeria than in Saudi Arabia.

49. Fellow Nigerians, to achieve the great country we desire, we need to solidify our strength, increase our commitment and encourage ourselves to do that which is right and proper even when no one is watching.

50. Fellow Nigerians, let us collectively resolve to continue our journey beyond the sixty years on the clear understanding that as a nation we are greater together than being smaller units of nationalities. By the special grace of God we shall come through any transient challenges.

51. It is my sincere hope that by the end of this anniversary on September 30th 2021, we will all be proud of taking this individual and collective self-assessment for the progress of our great Nation.

Long Live the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

God Bless us all. Thank you.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

You may also like

Business News Technology Technology Trends Telecoms Travels

Africa Data Centres breaks ground on new Sameer facility in Nairobi

post-image

Africa Data Centres (www.AfricaDataCentres.comhas broken ground on its new facility in Nairobi; The new build will expand its existing data centre by up to 15MW of IT load; The facility will be built in the company’s leading-edge modular design.

 

Africa Data Centres, a business of Cassava Technologies, a pan-African technology group, is pleased to announce it has officially broken ground on an additional data centre facility in Nairobi. The new build will see the existing facility on the adjacent piece of land expanded up to an extra 15MW of IT load.

 

ADC’s expansion at the new site will be completed in the first half of 2024 and will bring five times more capacity than is currently installed.

 

“We believe that data centres will play a significant role in digital transformation and economic growth on our continent. Without them, the push towards a digital economy in Africa will be…

Read More
Business Economy Education Investments Technology Technology Trends

Digital Expert Academy Promotes United States – Nigeria Collaboration in Tech

post-image

United States Consul General Will Stevens joined representatives from leading American tech companies, Nigerian technology and business leaders for the official opening of the Digital Expert Academy in Lagos.

 

Founded by 21st Century Technologies, the Digital Expert Academy seeks to create opportunities to train and upskill young Nigerians in artificial intelligence, digital infrastructure, machine learning, cloud services, data science, data center management among other tech fields.

Delivering keynote remarks on the theme “Technology as an Enabler and Tool for Empowerment,” Consul General Will Stevens noted that the U.S. government is committed to supporting programs that provide youth with quality technological learning opportunities. He highlighted the importance of tech skills to Nigeria’s future prosperity and economic competitiveness.

We hope that by developing local talent in tech fields, we help accelerate medium and long-term growth in Nigeria’s and indeed Africa’s digital economy

Consul General Stevens explained that the Biden Administration’s U.S. Strategy…

Read More
Business Culture Featured Technology Technology Trends

Meet Chika Uwazie, The Lady Taking African Blockchain Ecosystem By Storm!

post-image

Good things come in different packages and that is the story of Chika! The Blockchain technology is undoubtedly the future of information technology space, there is a need for Africans to be serious players in this budding but thriving ecosystem.

Cryptocurrency has been here for sometime though yo some it is a   new thing, with nations adopting it for transaction and others making plans for it in future . In Nigeria, a delectable lady is poised and positioned to bring disruption in this ecosystem, known as Chika Uwazie, a United State born serial entrepreneur has shown that Nigerian ladies can do wonders in the blockchain with her new firm called Afropolitian .

Speaking via her social media, she tweeted that “In order for Africa to avoid the same mistakes in previous innovation eras, we need to create our own infrastructure. We have not built our own…

Read More
Announcements Business Finance Society Technology Trends

CBN launches Nigerian Domestic Card, AfriGo

post-image

CBN launches Nigerian Domestic Card, AfriGo, bans dollar charges on domestic transactions.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has launched the Nigerian National Domestic Card Scheme, AfriGo, aimed at creating a more robust payment system that would drive financial inclusion in the country.

Launching the card virtually, this morning, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, said that transaction charges on all cards would henceforth be paid in Naira, except for international transactions.

According to him, AfriGo would be cheaper and would be a matter of national pride, with potential to boost financial inclusion.

 

 

Sapientia FM

Read More
Business Economy Technology Technology Trends

Protect against Business Email Compromise – or it may cost you dearly 

post-image

Don’t let your business be punished for, and by cyber fraud 

 

As the business landscape rapidly evolves, a general awareness of security vulnerabilities is no longer enough. Cyber fraud, data and payment breach risks need to be managed urgently and strategically with the right tools, says Ryan Mer, CEO at eftsure Africa, an automated Know Your Payee™ (KYP) platform provider.  

 

South African companies are facing a surge in Business Email Compromise (BEC) and other cyberattacks, exposing gaps in organisations’ payment systems with serious financial, reputational, and legal consequences. In January 2023, leading South African law firm, Edward Nathan Sonnenbergs (ENS) was ordered by the High Court in Johannesburg to pay R5.5 million including interest to a property buyer, Mrs. Judith…

Read More
Business Economy

Partech Africa Report: Resilient African Tech Ecosystem Still Growing with $6.5 Billion Raised in 2022

post-image

Amid the drastic pullback in global VC funding, the African tech ecosystem stands out with 8% growth from 2021. Debt funding doubled in volume to $1.5B, accounting for nearly a quarter of the total funding. Fintech, still leading, attracted 39% of the total equity volume; Nigeria retained the top spot with 23%

 

Partech Africa, the VC fund dedicated to technology startups in Africa, has issued its annual report on Africa Tech Venture Capital. The report, which aims to provide a practical picture of the state of the ecosystem, revealed that despite the global VC downturn, the African tech ecosystem grew faster than all other markets globally.

Total funding invested into tech startups on the continent reached $6.5B, an increase of 8% vs 2021, spread across 764 deals – compared to 724 rounds in 2021. The report, consisting of disclosed and confidential deals, saw debt funding more than double in volume, reaching…

Read More
Business Gadgets Security Technology Technology Trends Telecoms

CYBER SECURITY: ZORACOMS’ NSOC CENTER AS A GAME-CHANGER IN THE NIGERIAN IT SPACE

post-image

 

In a constantly evolving digital world that is fast paced, many organizations today are going fully digital or virtual. These processes have been known to deepen corporate organizations productivity and business continuity, but there are snags such as exposure and cyber threat. Criminals today are constantly evolving and finding new ways to breach the virtual and digital security infrastructures of organizations and individuals. These breaches cost as much as bullions of dollars in damages and loses when it has to get to fintechs and , identity firms other financial institutions. Having seen this loophole in the ecosystem in the area of having skilled manpower to monitor, abate and proactive these cyber threat, Zora Communications, an indigenous information technology (IT) firm Located in Lekki Area of Lagos recently launched one of a kind facility that will offer public and private sector players the desired and required tools and manpower that…

Read More
Business Events Society Technology Technology Trends

EVENTNEWS Lagos hosts gathering of Nigeria’s Top 50 Digital Economy Enablers 2023

post-image

Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial capital, is hosting the opening edition of Nigeria’s Top 50 Digital Economy Enablers February 14, 2023 at the prestigious Sheraton Hotel & Towers.  Nigeria’s Digital Economy is evolving positively in spite of a diversity of challenges for organisations in the public and private sectors.

Inspired by the need to express both the challenges and the iconic actors that have emerged to drive Africa’s fastest growing digital economy, the continent’s major tech-biz publication, published since 2007, IT Edge News.Africa (www.itedgenews.africa) and its Partners will be focusing on Nigeria’s Leading Lights referencing Nigeria’s Top 50 Digital Economy Enablers at an Industry Colloquium &Award Ceremony this February just before as the country goes to the poll to elect new political leaders.

The One Day Industry event is featuring a Nigeria’s Top 50 Digital Economy Enablers Recognition Ceremony; an Industry Networking Lunch; Nigeria Digital Economy Special Report; and the forum on  ‘Nigeria’s Digital Economy – Myth or Fact?’

According…

Read More