Deji Elumoye in Abuja
Senate President Ahmad Lawan has stressed the need for Nigerians to be ready to lead the nation out of its current challenges and misery.
Lawan, who also doubles as the Chairman of the Ninth National Assembly, spoke in Abuja at the launch of the book “Engineering and Sustainable Rural Development In Nigeria” written by Ahmed Amshi, and urged Nigerians to believe in themselves as the only ones that can develop Nigeria.
Said he: “Nigerians are the people to develop Nigeria. Nobody else will help us develop our country. Nobody will get us out of our misery, our challenges but ourselves. So we should believe in ourselves”.
According to him, Nigerians have always given good account of themselves anywhere in the world and in all fields of endeavour.
Lawan also made a case for local contents in all engineering projects undertaken in the country saying “I believe in the local contents and I think it is high time we insist on the local contents when it affects our engineering projects in this country”.
He posited that “after all even if we don’t insist on the local contents, those big companies use Nigerian engineers with the bulk of the work, the real engineering work, being done by Nigerian engineers, so we must insist on the local contents.”
Lawan promised to take up the issue of local contents at the Senate as a good ambassador of the engineering profession.
Commenting on the title of the book, the Senate President emphasised that for Nigeria to develop at all, the process must start with the development of the rural areas because the bulk of the population resides in the rural areas.
His words :”Therefore if there is anything we have to do, it’s for us to target the rural areas. Our farmers deserve every intervention. Our farmers and those in rural areas deserve every kind of subsidy.
“Other countries have achieved greatness because they face the reality of development. They subsidise farming, particularly those that have chosen to stay in the rural areas.
Therefore as a government, we don’t have too many options but to face the reality that the rural areas have to be attended to properly,” Lawan said