In a speech broadcast across the nation, President Muhammadu Buhari called for unity, while promising to ensure free and fair elections in forthcoming election in 2019. The President hailed the military and security agencies for the progress made in tackling insecurity in the country and warned disruptive and corrosive forces on social media to desist from their acts or be prepared to face the law.
Buhari full speech below:
NATIONAL BROADCAST BY HIS EXCELLENCY MUHAMMADU BUHARI PRESIDENT OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA ON THE 58TH INDEPENDENCE ANNIVERSARY, 1ST OCTOBER, 2018
Today is a day of celebration and solemn reflection. It is the anniversary of the day Nigerians realised one of the most cherished of human desires – the desire for freedom. We, therefore, give thanks to and remember our founding fathers who laboured so hard and sacrificed so much to build and bequeath to us this wonderful nation. It is our duty to consolidate this great legacy.
2. On this first October date and on the eve of the start of the general election cycle, we should do well to reflect on what binds us together and the great strength our diversity bestows on us. Ours is an ambitious nation, and, as citizens we have every right to look forward to the future with confidence and optimism which are well founded, considering where we find ourselves today.
3. There has been a steady improvement in the security situation in the North East. We remain committed to ending the crisis and make the North East safe for all.
4. Our thoughts and prayers are always with the victims of the Boko Haram’s atrocities and their families. Beyond that, we know that the goals of the Boko Haram terrorists include capturing territories, destroying our democracy and denying our children the right to education. We will not allow them to succeed.
5. I want at this point to pay tribute to the men and women of our armed forces, the Police and other security and law enforcement agencies, who have been working under the most difficult conditions to keep the country safe. In the process, many have made the supreme sacrifice.
6. As their Commander -In- Chief, I assure these our gallant men and women that I will continue to empower them by deepening their professionalism and providing all the necessary force multipliers and enablers required for them to prevail on the field. I am looking into all reported cases of inadequacies in relation to their entitlements, their welfare and those of their families.
7. We are diversifying away from reliance on oil to increased manufacturing capacity, solid minerals development, and agriculture.
8. Efforts are on course in the Niger Delta to clean up polluted lands, restore hopes of the youths in the region and re-establish livelihoods, and strengthen their capacity to guarantee for themselves and for our country a brighter future.
9. The age-long conflict between herders and farmers that was being exploited by those seeking to plant the seeds of discord and disunity amongst our people, is being addressed decisively. We will sustain and continue to support the commendable efforts by all including civil society organisations, local and states governments and our traditional and religious leaders in finding durable solution to this problem.
10. This being a transhumance issue, we are working with countries in our region that are also facing similar difficulties to complement our common efforts. In this context I must warn that the perpetrators of murder and general mayhem in the name of defending or protecting herders or farmers will face the full wrath of the law. Meanwhile, we urge all peace-loving Nigerians to reject any simplistic portrayal, at home or abroad, of this conflict as either religious or ethnic based.