When they say this government has not done anything, they don't say it because they believe it, they say it because they want to believe it, saying otherwise actually diminishes them. So, d narrative requires constant oiling to stay alive. This is a thread...
Kindly join me on this odyssey in examining how well d government has fared in its mission to 'change' Nigeria. "You don't have to see d entire staircase before taking d first step" - Martin Luther King. By may 29, 2015 when President Buhari took over d reins
2) of government, the world economic outlook was gloomy, Nigeria's case was even more precarious, global crude oil price had fallen to $50 per barrel from $112 pb d previous year and as low as $31 per barrel in Jan 2016. In the Niger delta, militants were
3) executing what they called 'Operation Red Economy', an operation involving programmed bombing of crude supply pipelines aimed at crippling the nation's economy because their preferred candidate lost in an election. Indeed, they succeeded in lowering the
4) production capacity from 2.3M to 1.3M barrels per day. Consequently; Nigeria was faced with a shrinking supply of forex, the average monthly inflow fell from $3.4b in June 2014 to $1.1bn in May 2015 & further down to $500m in October 2016. External reserve
5) was down from $68b in 2008 to $29bn in 2015, inflation was at 17%, there was a lull in manufacturing due to absence of key inputs as a result of forex crunch. 'Setting up a fire is only the beginning'. Insecurity had become a big issue, we could no longer
6) celebrate Independence day at d Eagle Square for fear of being consumed by insurgent's bombs. In 2011, 18 people were killed and many injured in a suicide car bombing at the U N headquarters in Abuja,
D Banex Plaza bombing in Wuse killed 21 and injured
7) 52, the Nyanya bombing took the lives of 71 people while 124 were injured. Meanwhile, d main theatre was in the North East, d fight against insurgency was moribund, our Armed Forces had become bystanders in d war, we depended more on mercenaries in
8) prosecting the war. PMB would have none of that, he ordered the Armed Forces back into war action, galvanised our neighbours, formed a joint international force & activated the process of rescuing 276 Chibok school girls abducted by Boko Haram
9) in April 2014. 'The best victory is d one that requires no battle', over 100 of the girls were eventually released in the first instance and reunited with their families. The economic situation was such that most of d states could no longer pay salary of
10) their workers, arrears of salary and pension had become an albatross to d states' Chief Executives, it was an unpalatable state of affairs; a position between d rock and a hard place. President Buhari had to arrange bail out funds for the states to enable
11) them pay arrears of salary and pension. PMB further kicked off the process of redeeming long-standing claims by the state governments of over deduction from FAAC allocation for external debt servicing from 1995 to 2002. No government since 2002
12) deemed it fit to do justice in the Paris Club refund. 'By their fruits, ye shall know them'. Our joint venture cash call with international oil companies was in deficit of over $5b, Nigeria had not paid its fair share for donkey years thereby stalling
13) exploration activities; causing little or no expansion in the oil industry. A substantial amount has since been paid leading to reactivation of exploration activities for oil and gas deposits. The government also commenced payment benefits to retired war-
14) affected Police officers, their dismissal for taking part in the civil war was converted to retirement in year 2000 via presidential amnesty but were never paid. PMB made payment of their dues happen and further saw to the completion of Zik's Mausoleum,
15) a project initiated first in 1998, abandoned and re-awarded in 2013 all to no avail. The ex staff of Nitel, Nigeria Airways and other companies/corporations liquidated in the privatisation exercise of the early 2000s have been receiving their pension in
16) batches despite lower receipts from oil. "Vision is a picture of the future that produces passion" - Bill Hybels The National Social Investment Programme was established in 2016 to tackle poverty and hunger in the land, a veritable means of spreading
17) resources to vulnerable population and to acquire skills and get paid for it, to support household consumption and develop human capital and school feeding programmes that have impacted on d poor and improved school attendance
18) all in a bid to stem the tide of rising poverty and improve lives and livelihood. These initial steps were made possible because the government was able to plug gaping holes of corruption by way of immediate implementation of of the TSA and BVN which
19) could not be done since 2012 and 2014 respectively for obvious reasons. The government through strict implementation of the IPPIS has also weaned the government of over 60,000 'ghost' workers from the payroll; saving the government over N6b in monthly
20) wage bill. The anti corruption fight also yielded a lot of cash by way of forfeiture and discoveries for immediate use. A fight that has since secured over 2,000 convictions including that of high profile individuals, forfeiture of hundreds of properties
21) and cash of over N800b. 'If u want to get out of a hole, u need to stop digging', to stem the rising import bill, government restricted forex allocation to 41 items, 4 of which cost the country N1.3trn annually and to make up for imminent scarcity, PMB
22) set up mechanisms to encourage domestic supply of rice, fish, sugar and wheat. The Anchor Borrowers' programme was established to build partnership between small holder farmers and reliable large scale agro processors to increase output and open access to
23) credit by farmers. Also instituted was a N222b Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Fund, N300b Real Sector Support Facility, N200b Commercial Agriculture Credit Scheme, N200b Non Oil Export Support Fund loans of 9% interest and the National
24) Collateral Registry where SMEs provide movable assets as collateral instead of fixed assets. This is only the first part, our odyssey continues tomorrow, hope you are enjoying the ride...Have a great weekend
25) Our odyssey continues! So, the sum total of all these and more equipped Nigeria to overtake Egypt as the biggest producer of rice in Africa. Local production of rice saved the country about $800m in 2018 alone. We are N0 2 in
26) Sorghum production in the world, Yam...N0 1, Cassava...N0 1, Sheanut...N0 1, Ginger...N0 2, Okra...N0 2, Sweet Potato...N0 2 etc. In the works are the Agricultural Rural Mechanisation Scheme that would cover 700 LGAs in 3 years and the Livestock
27) Development Project grazing model in Gombe with 200,000 hectares of land already earmarked. Training of 50,000 workers to complement existing 7,000 extension workers is also set to commence. Despite President Buhari's ill health for a period in his
28) first term, the ship of state continued to run smoothly, it also occasioned the experience of a novel handing over of power to a Vice President for the first time by any democratically elected government in Nigeria. The privatisation of power utilities in
29) 2013 was at best tacky, cronies and lackeys without requisite capacity and capability took over the generation and distribution aspects, it was chaotic in the least, the ensuing agreement tied the hands of government for 10 years in the first instance,
30) we had to endure the tortuous management of a bad situation to extract marginal improvement in power supply and distribution. 'It is better to appear guilty than impotent', government decided on incremental power strategy in conjunction with the German
31) government, this led to the signing of an electrification road map agreement to raise the capacity of DISCOs to 7,000mw by 2021, 11,000mw by 2023 and 25,000mw by 2025. This involves manufacturing of required plants and machinery for the upgrade of
32) facilities over time. N61bn counterpart funding has been set aside for the first phase. The 3,050mw Mambilla power plant is also set for construction this year while expansion and renewal of transmission lines are ongoing. Renewable energy solution
33) already exists in major markets and federal universities in Nigeria. 'It is only when you pee continuously on the same spot that you can behold the foam effect'. The NLNG train 7 is expected to increase the capacity of the 6 train plant from 22 million
34) tonnes per annum to 30 million tonnes per annum, this translates to 140,000 new jobs, less flares, more gas, tax income and better cooking gas penetration. "Vision is the art of seeing what is invisible to others" - Jonathan Swift. The ultimate gas vision
35) is to construct a $2.6b gas pipeline from the delta region through Ajaokuta, Kaduna to Kano that would serve gas to the whole of Africa while the gas plants to be built would serve the steel and power plants along the routes. Afrexim-bank and the Russian
36) government have also come up with $1.46b to complete the Ajaokuta project on a Build, Operate and Transfer basis. The attendant benefits are immense. The solid minerals sector is currently witnessing a resurgence with the active participation of State
37) governments. Gold, Zinc, Lead, Limestone, Coal and other solid minerals are earmarked to contribute about 3% to the GDP by 2025 up from a mere 0.3% at the instant. Thor Exploration of Canada is developing a gold project in Osun State, two gold refining
38) companies have been licensed to refine gold and produce bullion that the CBN can buy at international prices.5 modular refineries including Walter Smith in Imo, Azikel in Bayelsa, AIPCC in Edo, Ikwe -Oma in Akwa Ibom and NDPR in Rivers adds to the mix and
39) Dangote integrated refinery and petrochemical plant will also commence operations soon, that equates to additional 70,000 jobs, self sufficiency in refined petroleum products, fertiliser and forex savings. 'Trust is the key' The government is gradually &
40) steadily linking the country by rail for travel and commerce, the Itakpe Ajaokuta rail line was extended to link Warri with12 stations along the 276km route. The rail line construction began in 1987, abandoned but now completed. The Lagos Ibadan rail
41) project is due for commissioning this year, the almost 400kms of standard gauge tracks with 11 stations, 21 railway bridges, 40 vehicular flyovers and 27 pedestrian bridges from Apapa Harbour Station to Moniya in Ibadan; incorporating an inland dry port
42) at Akinyele Ibadan will receive cargo from the ports for redistribution. The project incorporates construction of rolling stock workshops and depots in Kajola, Abeokuta and Omi-Adio coupled with the mandate to establish a Transport University in Daura
43) by the Contractors. The next phase involves linking Ibadan with Abuja and Kaduna to Kano. The Abuja-Kaduna rail line started by President Goodluck Jonathan had earlier been completed and made operational along with the Abuja metroline. New locomotives
44) and coaches that someone said was impossible for us to have have suddenly become possible...60 passenger coaches consisting of 16 trailer cars and 44 cab cars are presently being deployed to the various routes. 'It's a new day yet'. Four new Airport
45) terminals in Abuja, Lagos, Kano and Port-Harcourt funded through a $500m loan from China Exim-Bank with counterpart funding ($100m) by Nigeria have also been delivered. Akanu Ibiam International Airport was rehabilitated in 2010 but collapsed before 2016
46) the airport terminal has been shut and undergoing an upgrade which includes extension of the runway to accommodate bigger aircrafts. The NPA gives a discount on all harbour dues for shipments berthing at the eastern ports of Calabar, Onne, Port-Harcourt
47) Warri. It's a new lease of life for the ports with ships delivering cargo leading to more activities within the axis. With a man like Buhari, 'it doesn't just rain, it pours'. Also under construction is the Lekki Deep Seaport, designed to handle 3
48) container berths, 3 liquid berths and long dry bulk berths, Lekki Deep Seaport upon completion is expected to create 170,000 jobs and generate billions in income.
This is only the second part... Our odyssey continues soon. Stick with me & enjoy the ride
49) The National Automotive Council was activated to revitalise the automotive industry for job creation, local value addition and technological acquisition. The Buhari government conceded a 10 year tax holiday for investors in vehicle assembly plants.
50) The government also helped to negotiate with 3 banks to provide loans with single digit interest to the investors. Over 45 licences have been issued and more than 10 local and foreign firms are already rolling out vehicles from their Assembly plants.
51) PAN, Hyundai, GIC Motor Company, Dangote Sinotruck, Volkswagen, Nissan, Ford, Elizade Motors, KIA Motors, Stallion Motors, Lanre Shittu Motors are some of the companies with success stories to tell. Anammco and Innoson Motors could not have had it better.
52) When PMB surprisingly ordered our land borders shut in August 2019; declaring an end to rampant smuggling across our porous borders, it generated a lot of tension amongst our neighbours, it also served as a rallying point for opposition elements to
53) sing their much hackneyed 'nay' song. The decision set off a chain of reactions leading to activation of local alternatives for items imported/smuggled through the land borders. Not only has the closure impacted positively on revenue generation at the
54) ports, it has also provided a buffer against the negative effects of covid-19 pandemic
Pray! From which country would we have been importing rice and other essential commodities sufficient for our population at this time! "I freed a thousand slaves, I
55) could have freed a thousand more; if only they knew they were slaves" - Harriet Tubman. When Yahya Jammeh decided to cling to power after losing to Adama Barrow in the 2016 Presidential election, his aim was to make a mockery of the electoral process and
56) subvert democracy even after 20 years in power, it was PMB that deployed troops and a warship-NNS Unity to Senegal in a bid to force the hand of Jammeh after series of meetings with him to relinquish power proved abortive. He was eventually
57) forced to leave the country on January 21, 2017 while Adama Barrow assumed office on 26th January. 'The bull is strong but the matador is smarter' Before now, Nigerians had come to accept their fate in terms of dilapidated countrywide road network, it was
58) futile hoping that things would get better, it was a pipe dream, a federal works minister once bursted into tears at the sight of one of the bad roads she was meant to fix even though the road never got fixed by her till she left the office. The coming
59) of President Buhari has since changed the narrative. Many federal roads and bridges are now witnessing a new lease of life. President Buhari continues to fight his way through to provide funds for critical infrastructure after the 8th Assembly leadership
60) put all impediments on his way to frustrate his desire, he came up with the Sukuk bond and the Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund option as a pool of funds to seamlessly execute critical infrastructure devoid of the shenanigans accompanying
61) approval processes at the National Assembly. This has been the bane of infrastructural development over the years. The Second Niger Bridge, Lagos Ibadan Expressway, Abuja Kaduna Kano road, Mambilla Power plant, East West road and a few others are direct
62) beneficiaries of the initiative. It is now clear to us that President Buhari is succeeding in his mission due to his resolve never to give in to the forces that have held us down for donkey years. Indeed, 'the difference is clear'. Every state in Nigeria
63) has at least 3 priority federal projects completed or ongoing apart from routine maintenance on major roads and bridges. 44 federal Universities are also benefitting from internal roads construction. As a Lagosian, I have had to savour the psychological
64) satisfaction from the return of 'State House Marina' to the government after decades in possession of the federal government, the sparkling view of resurfaced Third Mainland Bridge down to Falomo bridge soothes my soul as I traverse the routes. Ijora to
65) Apapa road, Dorman Long to Alaka and Apongbon bridges down to outer marina have been fixed. The ongoing Tincan Apapa to Ojota Toll gate (cement) road project is an engineering marvel while the Lagos Abeokuta road, Ikorodu to Sagamu and Okokomaiko to
66) Badagry roads presents hope of a brighter and rewarding future in Lagos. Included in this year's budget are the Ilorin Jebba Mokwa Birnin Gwari road, Enugu Onitsha, Onitsha Owerri, Bonny Bodo roads and bridge, Okene Auchi road, Nnewi Okigwe and Baro Port
67) roads, Makurdi Gboko Katsina Ala road. Under construction are the roads leading to President Obasanjo's Otta farms, the one that leads to VP Atiku Abubakar's hometown in Jada and the road leading to President Jonathan's hometown of Otuoke in Bayelsa.
68) Nigeria has since made progress on the ease of doing business world ranking, we have moved to about 131 from 169 out of over 190 countries with prospects for better placement. The minimum wage has also just been increased from N18,000 to N30,000
69) Youth Corpers have also had their allowance increased from N19,800 to N33,000. The Buhari government is definitely achieving more with less. When this government took over office, it met a total public debt of $63.8b, today, the total
70) public debt profile remains $84b. 'Nobody should attempt to scratch us where it does not itch', the developmental projects by this government are highly visible, where and on what can previous governments claim to have spent $63.8b of borrowed funds!
71) 'When a chicken gets to a strange land, it stands on one leg'. The Buhari government have also taken many false steps and made many mistakes and any government will, when I was voting for Buhari, I knew what I was getting, I did not vote for an orator or
72) motivational speaker, I voted for integrity, focus, will and determination, I voted for a man that could not be compromised, a man sold on people oriented programmes and projects. In terms of developmental programmes and infrastructural development,
73) no elected government comes near what PMB has achieved in 5 years. For those in denial of the fact, we cannot wake a man pretending to be asleep, for those whose preocupation it is to oppose, 'wisdom has a limit, it is stupidity that has none' End!
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