President Muhammadu Buhari Friday in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, provided insights into how he intends to lift Nigerians out of poverty, saying that the poor and vulnerable in Nigeria remain a top priority for protection and lifting from poverty cycle.
President Buhari who spoke at the virtual official presentation of the Country Review Report of Nigeria to the 31st Africa Peer Review Forum of the African Union, held in Ethiopia, listed Nigeria’s strategic focus set out to achieve the objectives of the African Union Agenda 2063.
The President said the focus will be hinged around building a thriving and sustainable economy; enhancing social inclusion and alleviating poverty; Others include enlarging agricultural output for food security and sufficiency; attaining energy sufficiency in power and petroleum products, as well as expanding transport and other infrastructural development, business growth, entrepreneurship and industrialization;
He disclosed that Nigeria will strengthen access to quality education, affordable healthcare and productivity, social cohesion and security; as well as build a system that fights corruption and improves governance. The President said the government will take advantage of Information, Communication and Technology to ensure inclusiveness, access and create more opportunities, while also sustaining social safety nets and access to education and opportunities.
“Nigeria remains resolutely committed to achieving these set goals despite the challenges that the report highlighted, including the COVID 19 pandemic The government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria remains committed to providing social safety nets for the poor and most vulnerable in our society, while also taking advantage of the huge opportunities offered by the information and technology sector,’’
The President reiterated that Nigeria had remained a committed and dedicated member of the African Peer Review family, after acceding to the Mechanism in 2003. “Today, the forum has presented its second peer review report on Nigeria. This Second Peer Review of Nigeria came at a critical time in the history of the country. From the report just presented, there is no doubt that the exercise was far-reaching, as it touched the various segments of Nigeria’s political economy and highlighted the progress recorded since the first peer review.
“The report also highlighted some challenges and as a country, we are prepared to review those challenges in the context of our internal dynamics in Nigeria, ultimately with the determination of achieving Agenda 2063 goals of the African Union,’’ he added. President Buhari said Nigeria remains grateful to be at the esteemed forum of the Heads of State and Government, which provides a unique opportunity to present the Country Review Reports of some countries, including the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“Let me use this opportunity to commend the President of South Africa for his dedication to the Forum since his election as the Chairperson of the African Peer Review Forum. I also recognize the distinguished panel of eminent persons for their continued good work in steering the African Peer Review Mechanism process in all member countries. I recognize specifically,
Abdoulie Janneh who led the Review Mission to Nigeria,” the President said. President Buhari congratulated the other three countries (Namibia, Niger and South Africa) that had been reviewed alongside Nigeria, commending the boldness and courage to present their countries for the comprehensive exercise.
“I call on other member states to join us and present themselves for review as well. There are so many lessons that we can all learn together. It is from learning these lessons and recommitting ourselves as a continent that we all can contribute to our collective efforts to achieve the objectives of the “Africa We Want”.”