Return your loot to experience peace, Buhari tells looters



Return stolen money to have peace, Buhari tells
looters
tells militants, Nigeria is not negotiable
admits that power sector unreliable
Olalekan Adetayo, Abuja
President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday
asked those who have stolen the nation’s
commonwealth to come and negotiate how they
will return their loot.
He said the move has become necessary so that
all may know peace.
The President has also told militants engaging in
renewed violence in the Niger Delta in clear terms
that the unity of the country remains non-
negotiable.
Buhari spoke when Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo
and the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory,
Muhammed Bello, led residents of the FCT to pay
him Sallah homage at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The President said looters would not know peace
if they refused to return stolen funds because his
government would continue to be on their trail.
“Please tell those with plenty of money which
does not belong to them to try and negotiate and
return it in peace so that both they and us will be in
peace, otherwise we will continue to look for it,”
the President said.
On security, the President expressed delight that
his government had made a lot of progress in
fighting terrorism in the North East.
He regretted that while the anti-terrorism war is
being won, the issue of militancy in the Niger
Delta resurfaced.
Buhari said the Federal Government had
commenced the process of identifying the number
of groups involved in militancy in the region with a
view to getting their leaders and appealing to them
to give Nigeria a chance.
He said he was in agreement with the slogan
made popular by a former military Head of State,
Gen. Yakubu Gowon (retd.), that to keep Nigeria
one is a task that must be accomplished.
He made it clear to the militants blowing up
pipelines and infrastructure in the region that
Nigeria’s unity is not negotiable.
The President said, “Please pass the message to
the militants that one Nigeria is not negotiable.
They better accept this fact.
“The Nigerian constitution is clear as to what they
should get and I assure them that there will be
justice.”
Buhari also admitted that despite the change in
name and form of the National Electric Power
Authority, the power situation in the country has
remained unreliable.
He said that was why the radio has become a
major source of information dissemination as
those who do not have electricity at home can
easily walk into a barber’s shops or drinking joints
and listen to the radio before continuing their
journey.
“Those who watch television are at the mercy of
what is used to be called NEPA. Whichever form it
(NEPA) has taken now, it has maintained the
tradition of unreliability. It is not everyday that the
people get the news,” the President said.
Buhari also admitted that there were a lot of
problems bedeviling the nation, especially on food
production.
He disclosed that the Minister of Agriculture, Chief
Audu Ogbeh; and the Governor of Central Bank of
Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele, are working hard to
address food production problem.
He said the CBN was borrowing the minister
money outside the budget so that he can assist
states especially the 13 states that can produce
rice.
The President expressed the belief that once the
nation can feed itself, more money can be spent
on infrastructure and social services.
Earlier, Osinbajo had said that it has been a tough
journey for the present administration because of
the clean-up exercise it embarked on since
inception.
He said the Buhari administration inherited what
he called “huge financial mess” from the past
administration.
He however expressed joy that things have started
looking up, adding that things would soon be
better for the nation and Nigerians.
“We will place the country on a strong footing,”
Osinbajo assured Nigerians.
Osinbajo prayed for Buhari that as he grows older
in age, he would be stronger in strength, adding
that the President will have enough strength to be
victorious no matter the challenges facing him
and the country.
Highlights of the Sallah homage included when the
Minister of FCT presented a giant season’s card to
the President while representatives of the Aso Villa
Chapel presented him with a big mirror and a giant
season’s card.
Buhari later took time to shake hands and pose for
photographs with all his guests one after the
other.
Representatives of the President of the Senate,
Bukola Saraki and Speaker of the House of
Representatives, Yakubu Dogara; members of the
Federal Executive Council and top presidential
aides attended the event.
Copyright PUNCH.

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