Why Past 18 Months Have Been Most Difficult In Nigeria – Buhari
For President Muhammadu Buhari, the past 18 months have been the most difficult period in the history of Nigeria since the civil war.
Buhari stated this in a nationwide broadcast to mark the nation’s 61st independence anniversary on Friday in Abuja.
The president noted that the nation had never witnessed more heightened challenges than what happened in the past 18 months.
President Buhari identified the devastating impacts of COVID-19 pandemic on the nation’s economy as one of the major challenges facing the country.
“Fellow Nigerians, the past 18 months have been some of the most difficult periods in the history of Nigeria. Since the civil war, I doubt whether we have seen a period of more heightened challenges than what we have witnessed in this period.
“Our original priorities for 2020 were to continue stabilising our economy following the deep recession while restoring peace in areas confronted with security challenges.
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“But the COVID-19 pandemic and its devastating impact on all nations meant we needed to shift gears and re-strategise.
“Nigerians came together as one to fight against COVID-19. It is this attitude and by the special grace of God, we continue to survive the pandemic as a nation and indeed, provide leadership and example at regional and international levels.’’
The Nigerian leader, however, assured citizens that his administration had successfully invested heavily in response to COVID-19 to tackle possible future outbreak pandemics in the country.
He said: “The doomsday scenario predicted for our country never came. Even as the Delta variant continues to spread, we have built the capacity we need to respond now and into the future.
“I will, therefore, appeal to Nigerians not to take COVID lightly, adhere to public health and social measures, put your mask on and get vaccinated.
“We can control this pandemic, but it requires effort on everybody’s part. The investments we made in response to COVID-19 will also serve our country to tackle any future disease outbreaks or pandemics.’’
According to the president, despite the global inequity in access to vaccines, the Federal Government has continued to explore all available options to ensure Nigerians have free access to safe and effective vaccines.
He revealed that already five million vaccine doses had been administered to Nigerians through efforts led by the National Primary Health Care Development Agency.
The president assured that the government would continue to explore options for purchase or acquisition of vaccines such as through COVAX and the African Vaccine Acquisition Trust.
READ ALSO: Buhari Okays Conditional Lifting Of Twitter Ban
“I will take this opportunity to remind the global community that the current state of access to COVID-19 vaccines is unacceptable. We cannot afford a situation where a handful of countries keep the global vaccine supply to themselves at the expense of other nations.
“We must act now to accelerate equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines. This is the message I conveyed to the international community in New York last week.
“As we push to source vaccines for our immediate needs, we shall invest more to support our pharmaceutical and research agencies to come up with ideas for locally developed vaccines. Should another pandemic arise in the future, our question is simple; will Nigeria be ready?
“Accordingly, I have directed the Ministries of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Health, Education and Science and Technology to work with Nigerian and International pharmaceutical companies and research organisations to enhance Nigeria’s domestic pharmaceutical capacity,’’ he said.
President Buhari disclosed that already, the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority is raising a 200 million dollars fund for the initiative that would complement the Central Bank of Nigeria’s ongoing N85 billion Healthcare Sector Research and Development Intervention Scheme.
According to him, this is to support local researchers in the development of vaccines and drugs to combat communicable and non-communicable diseases, including COVID-19.
On his administration’s approach to food security, the president said: “I am proud to announce Nigeria has commenced its journey to pharmaceutical independence.
READ ALSO: Protesters Demand Buhari’s Resignation
“This journey, which will take years to achieve but will ultimately result in Nigeria-based companies developing the active pharmaceutical substances and competence needed for us to make our own drugs and vaccines.’’
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BREAKING: Abacha’s Ex-chief Of Staff Oladipo Diya Dies
Retired Lt.General Donaldson Oladipo Oyeyinka Diya, the former Chief of Staff in General Sani Abacha’s military government, is dead.
His death was confirmed by Prince Oyesinmilola Diya. He said the former military administrator of Ogun State passed on to glory in the early hours of 26th March 2023.
Born on the 3rd of April, 1944, Diya was military Governor of Ogun State after the Buhari-Idiagbon coup of December 31st, 1983.
Diya joined the Nigerian Defence Academy, Kaduna and fought during the Nigerian Civil War.
He later attended the US Army School of Infantry, the Command and Staff College, Jaji (1980–1981) and the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, Kuru.
While serving in the military, Diya studied law at Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, where he obtained an LLB degree, and then at the Nigerian Law School, where he was called to bar as Solicitor and Advocate of the Supreme Court of Nigeria.
He held other top military posts like GOC, 82 Division and finally the Chief of General Staff (military Vice President) to Gen Sani Abacha
The statement read: “On behalf of the entire Diya family home and abroad; we announce the passing on to Glory of our dear Husband,Father, Grandfather,brother, Lt- General Donaldson Oladipo Oyeyinka Diya (Rtd) GCON, LLB, BL, PSC, FSS, mni.
“Our dear Daddy passed onto glory in the early hours of 26th March 2023. Please keep us in your prayers as we mourn his demise in this period. Further announcements will be made public in due course.
“Barrister Prince Oyesinmilola Diya, on behalf of the family.”
Breaking: Appeal Court Retains Adeleke As Osun Governor
The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has vacated the tribunal judgement that nullified the election of Governor Ademola Adeleke of Osun State.
The appellate court, in a unanimous decision by a three-member panel of Justices, on Friday held that the appeal Adeleke lodged to challenge his sack by the Osun State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal, was meritorious.
Aside from setting aside the judgement of the tribunal, the court, in its lead judgement that was delivered by Justice Mohammed Lawal, awarded N500, 000 cost against the All Progressive Congress, APC, and its candidate, Gboyega Oyetola
BREAKING: PDP Suspends Anyim, Fayose
Former governor of Ekiti State, Ayodele Fayose; former president of the Senate, Pius Anyim; Prof Dennis Ityavyar and Aslam Aliyu were on Thursday suspended from the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP).
The PDP made the suspension on Thursday after an extensive review of the affairs of the party, pursuant to the provisions of the PDP Constitution (as amended in 2017).
The PDP also referred the Governor of Benue State, Samuel Ortom, to the National Disciplinary Committee over his reported involvement in anti-party activities.
This was disclosed in a statement signed by the National Publicity Secretary, Debo Ologunagba.
“The PDP urges all leaders, critical stakeholders and teeming members of our party across the country to remain united and focused at this critical time,” the statement added.
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