President Muhammadu Buhari has renewed his call on state governments to double their efforts in the anti-corruption battle as the gains of their collective collaboration continue to face the dangers of annihilation if corruption persists at sub-national levels.
He made this declaration while declaring open the 3rd Federal Government-Progressives Governors’ Forum parley on policy synergy on Monday in Jos, the Plateau State capital.
President Buhari, who was represented at the parley by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, noted that to go forward in the anti-corruption battle, they must all work towards building a socially cohesive society in which the resources of the country worked for all.
“We will continue to apply public funds in such a way that no section of the country or segment of the population will suffer social exclusion,” he said.
Buhari further disclosed that his administration was more determined to subdue the challenges of insecurity in a bid to secure the country more than ever before.
He said the protection of lives and property was the primary responsibility of government, and that it was incumbent on the citizens to share in the responsibility as security was a collective responsibility of all.
President Buhari told the gathering of APC governors and top Federal Government’s officials at the conference that Nigeria was on a renewed growth trajectory, promising that his government would do everything in its powers to sustain the current economic recovery efforts through continuous reinforcement of macroeconomic policies to achieve sustainable economic stability and growth.
He added that they would continue to ensure that growth came along with more jobs and fair and just distribution of the national wealth, and called on the governors to give his government full cooperation in this regard.
Buhari added that his administration had come this far because of the unfaltering support and goodwill of the APC governors, assuring that he was confident that together they would achieve their objective of building a united and progressive Nigeria.
President Buhari also commended the contributions of the governors at sub-national levels to the socio-economic, cultural, and political development of the nation, stressing that analysis had shown that the economic growth and competitiveness of nation was a product of the harmonious collaboration of all tiers of government, particularly in a federal setup like Nigeria.
He commended the decision to focus at this current parley on yet another set of four key sectors – transport, health, education, and humanitarian and disaster management – as very commendable, noting that these areas were shared responsibilities as they were on the concurrent list of legislation.
Earlier, Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State, the host governor, in his welcome address, said he was happy to be given the hosting right of the very important crucial engagement organised by the Progressives Governors’ Forum whose focus was to strengthen public service delivery in APC states and the nation at large.
Lalong, who is the chairman, Northern Governors’ Forum, said as governors under the banner of the APC, they were fully committed to their vision of providing accountable, responsible, and responsive leadership to their citizens.
The national chairman of the APC, Adams Oshiomhole, in his goodwill message at the event, tasked APC governors to do all they could to be accountable to the people of the state they govern, advising them to pay salaries to their workforce in their respective states as and when due.
According to him, the current action taken by the Federal Government to close the nation’s border to prevent illegal items from being brought in was a welcome development, adding that Nigeria should be at the centre of the country’s foreign policy.
Minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi; Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, Minster of Internal Affairs; Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu; Minister of State for Health, Senator Olorunnimbe Mamora; Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Hajia Sadiya Umar Farouk, and governors of Katsina, Ekiti, Edo, Niger, Osun, and Nasarawa states made presentations at the gathering.