Nigerian Leaders March into 2013 with Optimism, Hope

01 Jan 2013

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131212T.Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi.jpg - 131212T.Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi.jpg

Rivers State Governor, Hon. Chibuike Amaechi

Our Correspondents

As usual Nigerian leaders at various levels have expressed hope and optimism that the nation will surmount the several challenges that rattled the country in the outgone year. Here are the excerpts of their statements:

Amaechi: We Must Govern for the Future
Rivers State Governor, Hon. Chibuike Amaechi, has said the focus of his administration was to provide a future for the people of the state.
Amaechi stated this in his New Year message to the people of the state.
He noted that the year 2013 would mark the mid-term of his second tenure and said it was time to take stock of the achievements of his administration and plan for the future of the people.

The governor recalled the challenges the state faced before his assumption of office and said he was satisfied that the state had made some meaningful progress, but added that there was still a lot to be done for the people.

“As you know we inherited a near comatose education sector, our health infrastructure had broken down, power remained a major challenge despite our huge investments in that sector and our road infrastructure was in dire need of urgent intervention. In addition to these, the challenges of militancy and its attendant insecurity had brought our economy to a standstill. 

Amaechi said the challenges made his administration resolve to serve the people and make their lives better.

His words: “It was therefore obvious to us that we needed to turn around our socio economic indicators. We, therefore, made a commitment to ‘serve our people with humility and render transparent and accountable stewardship anchored on integrity and good governance.”

He said his administration had also built model secondary schools and would in the New Year embark on the construction of a new campus of the State University of Science and Technology.

Amaechi expressed regret that he could not actualise the 24-hour power supply he promised the people by the end of 2012 but said efforts were on to ensure that the people enjoyed 24-hour power supply in 2013.

“We believe that we must govern for the future. Our plan in 2013 is to ensure that we adequately cater for the needs of all our sectors. Government will therefore pay attention and fund other sectors such as water, urban development, and Culture and tourism as well as employment generation,” he said. 

Suswam Preaches Peace
Governor Gabriel Suswam of Benue State has urged Nigerians in general to live in peace and eschew violence.
He said in a new year message that Nigerians should live like one family and resist divisive pressures in whatever form they may manifest, pointing out that it was only under an atmosphere of peace that development would be possible.

According to him, substantial progress was made in 2012 but assured that with certain policies and infrastructure in place, 2013 will be a better year that will see improvements in the standard of living of the average Nigerian.

“As 2012 rolls away to usher in 2013, Nigerians should learn to live in peace with one another as that is the only way to achieve our potentials which are great.

“We have the full assurance that with deliberate policies of government, adroitly pursued and implemented, Nigerians will begin to see a quantum leap in their standards of living which will only continue on the path of improvement,” he said.

Yero Calls for Peaceful Co-existence 
Kaduna State governor, Alhaji Mukhtar Ramalan Yero, has asked the people of the state to eschew all forms of bitterness and divisive tendencies and live peacefully with one other so as to create the needed environment for development.

In a New Year message Yero called on the people to pray for the state and the nation for peace and stability.

Yero said: “As we bid farewell to the year 2012 and expectantly look forward to the New Year, His Excellency, Dr. Mukhtar Ramalan Yero, the Executive Governor of Kaduna State, heartily felicitates with all the good people of the state.

“His Excellency further reiterates the fact that this administration is committed to building bridges of understanding across the various interest groups in the state irrespective of political, religious and tribal differences. 

“While calling for the cooperation of all people of the state to his administration, His Excellency further reminds us all to be conscious of the fact that security is the business of all and so we all should remain vigilant.”

PDP Calls for Attitudinal Change
The Peoples Democratic Party  (PDP) in its new year message said the only way out for the  nation to win the battle against various ills that retard her growth is that there must be a complete change of attitude among Nigerians, stressing that leaders and the led must seek the face of God.

In a goodwill message to mark the new year, the PDP lamented dwindling patriotism among Nigerians, stating that the major pre-occupation of the  party in 2013 will be to engender positive attitudinal change among the people.

The PDP, therefore, urged the leaders of the party at all levels to brace up for the challenge.

According to the party,” Our vote for attitudinal change in 2013 is informed by the simple fact the commonest denominator of the systemic challenges facing our national growth is the dwindling fervor of patriotism on which our founding fathers laid the foundation of our dear nation. The adverse implications of this have been manifest in various ills that retard our movement to greatness.”
The statement argued that the twin evils of corruption and insecurity which inflicted the deepest cut on the memory of Nigerians in the year ended could be overcome with the relegation of warped values by the people.

APGA, UPP Seek Positive Change  
The All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), and the United Progressive Party (UPP) have expressed the hope that the country would witness positive change and deep transformation in her affairs during the year.

APGA in its new year message to Nigerians issued yesterday by the National Director of Publicity,  Mr. Ifeanacho  Oguejiofor,  urged Nigerians to do away with the worries of the passing year and strive to work for unity, peace, justice and good governance in 2013.

“APGA wishes  that  the new  year  will  be a new dawn and a turning point for Nigeria and Nigerians, when the eclipse of  corrupt tendencies prevalent in the country will be over,  and the sun of great possibilities and actualizations,  shinning so bright, for the world to see, “ he said.

Iheanacho said APGA would like to see all Nigerians be good Ambassadors,  agents  of positive change and to ensure deep transformation, in their  personal and public lives in this 2013.
According to APGA, for  Nigeria  to work and be great,  there is need for a collective responsibility between the citizens and the government  where no one should shy away from his responsibilities.

“Therefore, all hands  to  the pumps, for God will only work with us  and  not  for  us.  We wish the Party faithful and every Nigerian, an outstanding and remarkable new year day, a peaceful and eventful 2013, and a transformed, better and prosperous Nigeria, “ he said.

On its part, UPP said it would want to see an end to  violence, avoidable accidents, corruption, armed robberies, kidnappings, infrastructural decay, hunger and executive recklessness in the new year.

In a statement signed  by the National Publicity Secretary of UPP, Chief Ogbuechi Dike, the party lamented the high state of despair that pervaded the land in 2012, adding that: “The new  year offers yet another opportunity for Nigerians to seek the face of God and resolve to build a strong, virile and prosperous democratic society.”
Commenting on the state of affairs in the country,  Dike said the party will like the Federal Government to sit up and tackle insecurity, corruption and poverty head-on.

“It is time to stop executive rigmarole and provide abundant democracy dividends to the long suffering Nigerians. it is a time to heal. A time to demonstrate exceptional patriotism and uphold those things that bind us as a united, peaceful and indivisible nation.

It is time to build a solid foundation for sustainable democracy, social justice, religious harmony and a new national orientation that emphasizes morality, integrity, dignity in labour, love and compassion.” he said.

Orji Promises Enhanced Industrial Growth in Abia
Abia State would in 2013 witness tremendous industrial growth anchored on agro-based value chain industries and emergence of young agro-entrepreneurs in the rural areas, the state governor Chief Theodore Orji has said.

The governor made the forecast in a goodwill message to Abia people to usher in the New Year, noting that the agro entrepreneurs would be fully engaged in the emerging mechanised “liberation” farms established in the three senatorial zones.

To achieve an all round industrial development in the state, Orji said his government would pursue the actualisation of the planned technology parks in Aba and Umuahia to further unlock the ingenuity of the state’s local entrepreneurs.

This, according to him, would bring back the industrial glory of Aba and its famed Aba-made goods, pointing out that the process will support the SMEs in the state and provide self employment for Abians.

On efforts to revitalise comatose industries, the governor promised that he would push harder for the revival of the Golden Guinea Breweries Limited, which used to be the flagship industry of Abia before it went down about a decade ago.

He said in 2013 the ongoing legacy projects would begin to make the desired impact on the people of Abia by providing the anchor for tackling the development challenges of poverty, unemployment and inequality in the state.
To plug loopholes of revenue leakages the governor said that with effect from January 2013, a new electronic product tax system would come into operation whereby revenue accruing to the state would be deposited directly into the government’s accounts.

AD, LP Urge Selfless Service
The Alliance for Democracy (AD) and Labour Party (LP) have urged government leaders and the political class to see the dawn of a new year as a time to eschew selfishness, greed and avarice in governance.

In his goodwill message, the National Chairman of LP, Chief Dan Nwanyanwu, said despite the multifaceted challenges facing the nation,  there is every hope that the country will soon get its act right.
“I see a Nigeria where selfishness among the political class and business community will give way to sacrifices, selflessness and love for the nation; where tribe and tongue, religion or political divide will no longer determine issues of national importance, “ he said.

He said there is hope that the new year will usher in a new lease to life where unemployment, insecurity, academic decadence, lawlessness, legislative rascality, economic sabotage, rot in the judiciary, election malpractices will give way.

“I dare say that Nigeria may have had it rough in the past but I believe that the present leadership, with the support of Nigerians can steer the ship out the troubled waters, “he added.
The National Secretary  of AD, Mr. Rafiu Salau in a statement said the party is giving  the government of President Jonathan a pass mark for making efforts to tackle the rot in the power sector and oil industry.

The party  commended the National Assembly for passing 2013 budget bill before the end of the year.
However, Salau expressed the party’s concern on the falling quality of education.

He also lamented the bloated nature of the Federal Civil Service, adding that government should work towards cutting down on recurrent expenditure.

“The nation needs a civil service system with higher productivity. The present civil service system consuming 80 per cent of the income of the nation is like a servant of a farmer taking 80 per cent  of the proceeds of the farmland.

Olubolade: Let’s Promote Security
As Nigerians go through the annual ritual of making New Year resolutions, Minister of Police Affairs, Navy Captain Caleb Olubolade, has charged them to make the promotion of internal peace and security the focal point of such resolutions.

According to him, Nigerians must recognise the fact that security has remained the most challenging problem in the country over the past few years and need to get more involved in the concerted efforts by government to tackle it, noting that without the support and full cooperation of the people, the security agencies can do little or nothing.

Olubolade, further urged Nigerians to be concerned with what happens around them especially as they relate to the security of their immediate community and report all possible threats to law enforcement officers, as without security, every achievement in other sectors would be blighted.

The Minister asserted that in spite of the myriad of challenges posed by the activities of agents of destabilisation, a lot was achieved by the Nigeria Police and other security agencies as seen in the reduction in terrorist activities, armed robbery and other criminal activities, especially towards the end of the year.

He ascribed the relatively peaceful atmosphere under which Nigerians celebrated last year’s Christmas to the alertness of the Nigeria Police in concert with other relevant agencies, as well as the cooperation of well-meaning citizens who provided useful information which helped in curtailing the activities of miscreants.
Year 2013, he said, holds a lot of promises for the people, as government would build on the visible accomplishments of the the out-going year.

Amosun Lauds Support for His Govt
Ogun State governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, has said his administration has enjoyed tremendous cooperation from the people of the state in its development strides.

He noted that, “contrary to speculations in some quarters that our people are averse to development, the good people of Ogun State have shown unparalleled and rare enthusiasm for positive change.”
The governor, who disclosed this in his New Year message to residents yesterday in Abeokuta.
He said: “We have seen people removing the roofs of their houses and even breaking walls before the demolition team of the road construction firms gets to their areas. Up till now, we have not received any news of confrontation at any of the sites.”

He stated that his government had had “pleasant experiences” in its ongoing construction work in Sagamu, Sango Ota, Ijebu Ode, Abeokuta and other places, adding: “Our people will always support genuine development effort and make the necessary sacrifices where they see sincere efforts by the leadership to bring about improvement on their standard of living.”

While calling for more sacrifices from residents on the development projects, Amosun assured residents that his administration would continue to lessen the pains of those affected through prompt payment of due compensation.

The governor disclosed that plans were already on for the construction of modern shopping malls to take care of displaced market men and women.

Saraki Craves for Peace, Unity
Former Governor of Kwara State and senator representing Kwara Central senatorial district, Senator Bukola Saraki,  has urged Nigerians on this new year 2013 to make peace, unity and love  their resolution in order to move this nation forward.

Saraki stated this in Ilorin, in his new year message. 
He noted that, “though the challenges ahead are much, but it is nonetheless surmountable with an enthusiasm spirit by us all”.
Saraki, who  recalled that, just like the motions he sponsored that brought sanity to the oil sector and the need for an amendment to NOSDRA Act, which are some of the major steps he took in 2012 for Nigerians to look inwards,  assured that he would continue to push for laws and motions that will improve the standard of living of every Nigerian through appropriate legislative procedures.
According to him,,”As Nigerians, we have a lot to be thankful for in 2012, and much more to look forward to in 2013.”

He added that the insecurity and economic instability of our dear nation in the last one year have threatened our national unity and heightened our worries and concerns, adding that there had been serious awakening among Nigerians in the state of the polity than ever before.

He urged Nigerian,” to remain on course with our reforms, be positive and optimistic in our steady march towards the making of Nigeria of our dream.”

Kalu: We Expect More from Jonathan
A former Governor of Abia State, Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu, has described 2013 as a year of great expectations from President Jonathan.
Kalu, in his New Year message to Nigerians, said with the numerous crises facing the country and the promise by Jonathan to fast track development in Nigeria in 2013, the President would be taken to task this year.

Kalu said with the Boko Haram insurgence, fuel crises, labour-related issues and other challenges that confronted the country in 2012, the expectations in 2013 will be for Jonathan to confront these monsters headlong and provide effective leadership.
He said: “Nigerians do not expect anything less from the President than solutions to the numerous crises facing the country.
“And with the earlier promise by the President that he would fast track development in 2013, the President should not expect anything less than being held accountable for the huge resources coming into the country’s purse vis-a-vis development in all spheres of the country’s life.”

PPA Seeks Prayer for Jonathan
The Progressive Peoples Alliance (PPA) has urged Nigerians to support President Goodluck Jonathan with prayers in 2013, irrespective of their party affiliations.

In a New Year message by the National chairman of the PPA, Chief Sam Nkire, the party said what President Jonathan needed most at this time was fervent prayers in order to deal with the problems of corruption, poverty, unemployment and insecurity.

Nkire commended the President for the improvement he has recorded in the power sector as well as the upgrading of  some portions of the Lagos-Ore Road.

He urged Jonathan to also consider upgrading the Enugu-Port Harcourt Road, among others.
According to the signature of one corrupt government official in one split second was capable of taking the country backward by more than one year of unemployment, homelessness, civil unrest and violence.

Njiko Igbo Calls for Unity among Nigerians 
Njiko Igbo, a non-partisan political association, has congratulated Nigerians at home and abroad for witnessing yet another new year.
In a New Year message signed by the National Publicity Secretary, Brady Nwosu, the group  appealed to everyone irrespective of age, religion, tribe, race , to live together in peace and harmony.

Nwosu described Nigeria as a great nation with potentials to grow beyond boundaries if all collectively play their noble roles as government and citizens.

He advised Nigerians to reflect on the happenings of 2012 in order to make 2013 a prosperous new year.

He used the opportunity to seek support from Ndigbo all over the world and other regions of the country for the correction of the marginalization of the South-east regarding infrastructural development and national leadership positions.

Nwosu also challenged government at all levels to meet the yearnings and aspirations of the citizens in order to restore the lost confidence between government and the governed.

Akpabio: Let’s Be Nearer to God
Governor Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom State has charged Nigerians and the people of the state on the need to draw close to God as they start another journey of their sojourn on earth as that is the only way by which they would succeed and achieve their objective this new year.

the governor stated this in his New Year message in a state wide broadcast.
According to him , ‘’as  we  end year 2012 let us count our blessings and thank God for everything, let us continue to pray for the best in 2013 and continue to draw closer to our creator because that is the only way we can continue to attract his blessings, protection and provision in the new year as individuals, state and a nation, noting ‘’as a people and state, we have moved from the fringes of national life to the centre of national attention. We have run a good race in terms of infrastructural development, human capacity building, economic growth and educational advancement and health-care services’.’

He thanked Akwa Ibom people for the kind sentiments they expressed during his 50th birthday celebration, acknowledging: ‘’We set out to change Akwa Ibom State, but it looks like we are changing Nigeria. The tidal wave of development that we have unleashed upon our state has caught the imaginnation of the nation. Our state has become the destination of choice for conferences in Nigeria and the Gilgal of our nation.”

Awoniyi Promises Infrastructure Devt
Kogi State Deputy Governor, Mr. Yomi Awoniyi, has said there is going to be a new dawn in infrastructural development in 2013 under Governor Idris Wada’s administration.

The Deputy Governor, gave the hint in his New Year message, urging  the people to more than ever before embrace the transformation agenda of the present administration.
The Deputy Governor assured that with a plan of action that is holistic, inclusive and strategic, Wada would surpass people’s expectation in the new year.
Awoniyi pointed out that after a period of careful planning, the state is now set for a massive infrastructural turn around among other expected development as never witnessed before in the state.

While thanking the people of the state for their support to the Wada administration, the Deputy Governor urged the people to live in peace with one another as the expected development in the state, can only be attained in an atmosphere of peace and harmony.

He also thanked those who stood by the state when flood ravaged some part of the state and other challenges the state went through in 2012 particularly when the state governor was involved in an auto crash.

Yuguda: Nigeria Will be Great
Bauchi State Governor, Malam Isa Yuguda, has described the 2012 as an eventful year, which will spur the nation to greater heights, despite the challenges faced by country. 

The governor who spoke in his new year goodwill message to the state, said: “The last one year witnessed many tragedies, which included the passing away of many prominent Nigerians among whom were a serving governor and elder statesmen and other prominent Nigerians. Various parts of the country were also ravaged by flood disaster during the last raining season.”
He, therefore, commiserated with the families of the deceased and victims of the flood disasters.

The governor noted that the state in the last one year was confronted by security challenges, but promised that government in collaboration with the security agencies was able to overcome the challenge.

“I wish to call on each and every citizen of the state to make his or her new year resolution towards a peaceful co-existence among our brothers and sisters irrespective of your religious, cultural or political differences. We should also continue to fervently pray for the security challenges to come to an end and for peace to reign throughout the country,” he said.

Tags: Politics, Nigeria, Featured, Nigerian Leaders, 2013, Optimism, Hope

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