Wednesday, April 29, 2015 5:36 pm
“I am here today, to invite you to work with the executive as partners in progress, as champions of good governance and development and as warriors for change. Together, we can make this nation great and as a role model in Africa and other emerging economies and democracies,” Buhari said.
Among the problems highlighted are general insecurity and insurgency North Eastern Nigeria and some parts of North western Nigeria, devastation and environmental degradation in the Niger Delta and the decline in revenues due to fall in oil prices.
Others are endemic corruption, poor power supply, high levels of unemployment, high costs of goverannce and erosion of publish infrastructure, health and education. Also to be tackled headlong is the lack of development in the agricultural and solid mineral sectors.
Buhari spoke today in Abuja at the induction for newly elected members of the 8th National Assembly, with the president-elect seizing the moment to seek their collaboration in coping with the daunting tasks ahead. The Assembly will be inaugurated early June.
“The legislature is a critical component and necessary ingredient of democracy and good governance. The legislature by nature is inherently democratic in the sense that all members are equal and are elected representatives of the Nigerian people. As President-Elect, I recognize this fact and believe that legislators carry this heavy burden of representation with all the seriousness it deserves. For a president to be successful in addressing community development and general welfare of the various people of the country, he or she would benefit from working closely and in harmony with the legislative arm of government. I therefore commit myself to working with the legislature as development partners motivated by the desire to deliver good governance”, Buhari said.
“I see these development challenges as the mission of my presidency. I need the support of the Members of National Assembly on the battle front. I need your support in many respects,” added.
Buhari underscored why he needed the support of the legislature, since the policies to be deployed to tackle the development challenges, may have to be proclaimed into law.
He said his mission to bring integrity into governance will have to be complemented by a ‘strong culture of transparent oversight’ function of the legislators, whose duty will be to ensure that policies are implemented effectively and transparently.
“Thirdly, we need to collaborate on the budget process and restructuring of the public sector so as to collectively tackle the menace of high recurrent cost at the expense of capital and human development.
“Fourthly, there is an urgent need to contain this high state of insecurity. All of you are representing various communities. We need to work together to address the problem from both its roots and manifestations. The strongest mitigating forces at this point are to redress the power sector deficits, encourage investments that are job creating and focus on human development and reconstruction. We also need to deploy efforts in conflict resolution and peace building in all our communities.”