Friday, January 1, 2016 11:36 pm
President Muhammadu Buhari has said Federal Government will soon inaugurate a committee saddled with responsibility of rehabilitating infrastructure, and resettle Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the North East of the country.
The President, who stated this in Abuja on Friday in an audience with Women In Politics Forum (WIPF), said the committee would be headed by retired Gen. T. Y. Danjuma with Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, as one of the members of the committee.
Buhari announced that all forms of assistance and aid generated locally and from foreign countries as promised by the G7 industrialised nations would be channelled through the committee when inaugurated.
He said that he had compiled a list of damaged infrastructure, including schools and bridges and handed it to the leaders of the G7 and the U.S.
“I didn’t ask for a Kobo (in cash). It is up to them to choose what they will undertake. Already, some of them have sent teams to verify our assertions.’’
The president decried the impact of the Boko Haram violence on women and children, declaring that they were its worst victims.
“In the North-East, what I saw for myself and on those clips is a source of concern for people with conscience. They are mostly women and children, who are orphaned. Some of them don’t even know where they come from. This is the pathetic situation in which the country has found itself.’’
According to him, the fight for the return of the Chibok girls is ongoing and “continues to be a most worrying issue” to his government.
He, however, emphasised that the administration would do all within its powers in making the best efforts to secure their freedom.
The president acknowledged the case made by the WIPF for better representation of women in his government and assured that women would fare well in the composition of parastatal agencies and their boards in the first quarter of this year.
He also defended the records of the administration in response to criticism that it was slow, saying that steps must be taken with caution to avoid mistakes.
“People say we are slow. We are trying to change structures put in place by our predecessors in office for 16 years. If we hurry it, we will make mistakes. That will be a disaster,’’ he said.
According to Buhari, the country has a budget proposal for the New Year that is good for employment and manufacturing.
He reassured that by the end of the second quarter of the year, the positive impacts of the budget would be felt across the country.
Earlier in her remarks, the spokesperson of the group, Mrs Ebere Ifendu of the Labour Party, expressed their full support for the government’s war on corruption and insecurity.
She called on the government to usher in laws to promote gender equity as well as action toward the implementation of the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act.
The WIPF, comprising women leaders from 26 political parties, made the record of being the first organisation to be received by the President in the New Year.