Nigeria is Better than I Met it, Says Buhari
In a self-assessment yesterday, President Muhammadu Buhari awarded his administration high marks, saying the country is better than he met it more than five years ago.
But the main opposition party, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), and the pan-Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere, faulted the president’s claim, contending that he has underperformed.
Buhari, in assessing his administration yesterday, gave himself a pass mark for a job well done, tasking the elite to be fair in their criticism of his stewardship.
Buhari, who spoke while hosting the Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Christian Pilgrims Commission, Reverend Yakubu Pam, painted a bad picture of the economy, infrastructure as well as the security situation in the North-east as at the time he became president on May 29, 2015.
The president, in a statement by his media adviser, Mr. Femi Adesina, charged Nigerians, especially the elite, to be fair in their criticism of his administration, given the state of the nation in 2015 and thereafter.
He said: “Those criticising the administration should be fair in terms of reflecting on where we were before we came, where we are now and what resources are available to us and what we have done with the limited resources.
“We had to struggle paying debts, investing in road repairs and rebuilding, to revamp the rail and try to get power. This is what I hope the elite, when they want to criticise, will use to compare notes.”
On security, especially in the North-east, the president said: “What was the situation when we came? Try and ask people from Borno or from Adamawa for that matter and Yobe. What was the condition before we came and what is the condition now?”
Buhari added that although there are still some security challenges in the North-east, the situation has improved.
“Still, there are problems in Borno and Yobe, there are occasional Boko Haram problems, but they know the difference because a lot of them moved out of their states and moved to Kaduna, Kano and here (in Abuja). We were not spared of the attacks at a time. The government is doing its best and I hope that eventually, our best will be good enough,” he stated.
The president also expressed the determination of his administration to ensure a better life for Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).
“The people in IDP camps, the weak, the aged; I feel sorry for the young because this is the time they are supposed to get an education. We must not allow this time to pass because it will never be regained. So we are really interested in what is happening there and we are doing our best.”
He commended Pam on his appointment and activities on peacebuilding around the country despite his short time in the saddle.
Earlier, Pam had intimated the president with some of the activities of the commission since he was appointed in July 2020.
These, he said, include the organisation of a peace summit on Southern Kaduna as well as peacebuilding efforts in Plateau, Benue, Taraba and Nasarawa States, adding that the commission is proposing to host Christian leaders at a summit to ease tension in the polity.