President Muhammadu Buhari
Aside from fuel, President Buhari also spoke on his readiness to pursue credible elections in Nigeria, warning that Nigerians who sell their votes should be prepared to be denied their rights.
He said that it was the desperation of the political class that leads to compromising the judiciary to upturn legitimate decisions of the people.
President Buhari also said that no government in the past did what his administration was doing with scarce resources, adding that his government has managed to keep things going, in spite of the disproportionate spending on security.
He also said that it was those in the previous governments from 1999–2015 who allegedly presided over the near destruction of the country that now have the impudence to attempt to criticize his efforts.
The Nigerian leader also spoke on the efforts of his administration to strengthen the electoral process in the country, saying that some constituencies that choose to bargain off their power, should be prepared for denial of their rights.
President Buhari said it would pay Nigerians better to collectively resolve to continue as one country beyond 60 years than being smaller units of nationalities, irrespective of the challenges.
His words: “I speak to you today as your President and fellow citizen on this epoch occasion of our country’s 60th independence Anniversary. As President, I wish to renew my appreciation to Nigerians for entrusting me with your hopes and aspirations for a better and greater Nigeria.
“Today, it is my unique privilege to re-commit myself to the service of this great country of great people with profound diversities and opportunities. We are bound by destiny to be the largest and greatest black nation on earth.
“At this stage in our nationhood it is important that we reflect how we got here to enable us work together to get to where we aspire to be as a strong indivisible nation, united in hope and equal in opportunity.
“On October 1st 1960 when Prime Minister Alhaji Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, received the constitutional instruments symbolizing Nigeria’s independence, he expressed his wish that having acquired our rightful status as an independent sovereign nation, history would record that the building of our nation proceeded at the wisest pace.
“This optimism was anchored on the peaceful planning, full and open consultation and harmonious cooperation with the different groups which culminated in Nigeria emerging as a country without bitterness and bloodshed.
“Our founding fathers understood the imperative of structuring a National identity using the power of the state and worked towards unification of Nigerians in a politically stable and viable entity.
“That philosophy guided the foundation that was laid for our young nation of 45 million people with an urban population of approximately 7million occupying an area of 910,768 square kilometers. These demographics led to development challenges for which major efforts were made to overcome.
“Today, we grapple with multiple challenges with a population exceeding 200million occupying the same land mass but 52% residing in urban areas.”