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Mohammed Presents Score Card, Says FG Proud Of Achievements

Lai Mohammed
Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed

March 28, (THEWILL) – The Federal Government says the score card of President Mohammadu Buhari-led administration is unprecedented and something to be proud of.

Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, stated this during a press conference on Monday, in Abuja.

He disclosed that the administration has invested huge resources in infrastructure development, security, agriculture, oil and gas, health, social investment programmes and other sectors in the country.

“We are proud that in our time, Nigerians are once again able to travel by rail, this time in total comfort and safety. Lagos-Ibadan, Abuja-Kaduna, Warri-Itakpe-Ajaokuta and Abuja Metro line are shining examples of our rail revolution. And we are just getting started.

“We have the rehabilitation of the Port-Harcourt-Maiduguri Eastern Narrow Gauge Railway project that cuts through Rivers, Imo, Anambra, Benue, Enugu, Ebonyi, Gombe, Yobe, Adamawa and Borno states, and the Bonny Deep Sea and Railway Industrial Park.

“We have the Kano-Maradi standard gauge line that passes through some economic hubs of the country, including Kazaure, Daura, Katsina and up to the border town of Jibiya and the city of Maradi in Niger Republic.

“We are proud of the Integrated National Security and Waterways Protection Infrastructure (also known as Deep Blue Asset), aimed at managing, controlling and protecting Nigerian waterways towards the advancement of coastal prosperity”, the Minister said.

Mohammed said that in their time, long abandoned roads and bridges are either being repaired or built anew, adding that the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, which is due to be completed this year, is already offering a joyful ride to happy motorists.

“The 26.27km Nnewi-Uduma Road, Sections I and II in Enugu and Ebonyi States.The 100.08km Kano-Maiduguri Road Section II (Shuwarin-Azare) in Jigawa and Bauchi States. The 106.34km Kano-Maiduguri Road Section III (Azare-Potiskum) in Bauchi and Yobe States. The 24km Vandeikya-Obudu Cattle Ranch Road Phase I and II in Benue and Cross River States and the 304km Sokoto-Tambuwal-Jega-Kontagora-Makera Road. These are just a part of the over 800 ongoing road (covering 13,000km) and bridge projects across the country”, said Mohammed, who also pointed the 2nd Niger Bridge as another legacy project that is almost completed.

Mohammed said, the Ikom Bridge in Cross River, Loko-Oweto Bridge in Nasarawa, Ibi Bridge in Taraba and Bamenda-Mfun Bridge linking Nigeria and Cameroon are other notable legacies of the Buhari administration.

“The list continued with Chanchangi Bridge along Takum-Wukari road in Taraba, Koton-Karfe Bridge in Kogi State and the Bodo Bonny road/Bridge in Rivers”, he added.

The Minister said the administration has now delivered four state-of-the-art new airport terminals in Abuja, Kano, Lagos and Port Harcourt.

“We have also constructed and installed Boeing 737 full motion flight Simulator at the Nigerian College of Aviation Technology (NCAT) in Zaria, a development that will save Nigeria millions of dollars spent in the retraining of pilots in other countries.

“We have in addition, installed the fully-automated Aircraft Firefighter Training Simulator also at NCAT, the first of its kind in Africa, we are re-fleeting NCAT with Trainer Aircraft, and we have delivered six aircraft so far”, the Minister said.

He said in an effort to have a world class aviation industry, the government also installed novel Cat III ILS/DME at Lagos and Abuja airports, instruments that will allow flights to land at low visibility.

“We have procured two mobile control towers in Lagos and Abuja and designated four International Airports in Abuja, Kano, Lagos and Port Harcourt as Special Economic Zones, aimed at encouraging business/investment. We are about to kick-start the construction of the second runway for the airport in Abuja”, said Mohammed.

The Minister, who noted that the National Social Investment Programme (NSIP), is the biggest of its kind in sub-Saharan Africa, said the N-Power programme, “benefits 1 million people; the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP), has benefitted 4 million people; the National Home Grown School Feeding Programme (NHGSFP) is providing quality meals daily to 10 million primary school pupils.

“In addition to empowering over 100,000 cooks and the same number of small holder farmers in the local areas, where the schools are located. The Household Uplifting Programme (HUP), which has the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) as its flagship intervention, provides N5,000 monthly grants to almost 2 million eligible households across the country.”

Explaining the energy sector activity, he said oil producing countries are today smiling to the bank as oil prices are on the rise, but unfortunately, Nigeria cannot reap the full benefits of the windfall because of years of neglect of the oil industry.

However, the Minister said that with the signing of the Petroleum Industry Act, more investments would be attracted to the industry and delineate responsibilities to the various institutions.

“This is a monumental achievement in the critical oil and gas sector”,said Mohammed, adding that businesses are springing up in all sectors, which are due to the sort of conducive business environment created by the government.

“Under this Administration, the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC), has implemented over 150 reforms, moving Nigeria up 39 places on the World Bank Doing Business index since 2016.

“The result of this favourable business environment is the birth of new businesses such as the $2.5 billion Dangote Fertiliser Plant that will produce 3 million metric tonnes of Urea every year; the 650,000 barrels per day oil refinery due to open later this year.

“The Lekki Deep Sea Port, one of the most modern sea ports in West Africa; BUA’s 3 million metric tonnes cement plant; and the 5,000 barrels per day Modular Refinery in Ibigwe, Imo State, and three more modular refineries to be commissioned before May 2023 in Edo and Bayelsa states just to mention a few”, he said.

Mohammed disclosed that rice production in Nigeria has increased to over 7.5 million metric tonnes annually.

“Before the ANCHOR borrowers programme, the average production in Nigeria between 1999 to 2015 was less than 4 million metric tonnes annually”, he added.

The Minister, who also noted the excellent performances of Security forces, said, “Despite a myriad of security challenges, they are living up to the billing. The recent string of successes recorded in the fight against Boko Haram and ISWAP is uplifting. As the terrorists and their camps are being decimated, thousand of terrorists and their families are surrendering in droves.”

At the briefing, the Minister also berated the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for spreading fake news and misinformation about the government.

“We have consistently showcased the massive achievements of this Administration in all sectors, even as we admit the challenges we face and work hard to ameliorate things.

“But against the resort to lies and misinformation by the opposition, it is absolutely necessary for us to dispel their misrepresentation of facts and put things in perspective, which is what we have done today.

“We are not under any illusion that they will stop their misrepresentation. No, because in their desperation to return to complete their demolition work on Nigeria, the opposition will stop at nothing to paint us bad”, he added.