President Muhammadu Buhari has urged Nigerians to focus on what unites them and promised to work tirelessly for the country’s unity.
The President said this in his Independence Day anniversary address to the nation on Monday.
As the country turns 58, the President believes it is on the right part, despite challenges, with much worth celebrating.
“As we celebrate the 58th Anniversary of our independence, we know we are on the right path. Although we have our differences, they count for far less than the values, virtues and common aspirations that unite us as a nation,” he said.
“We have so much for which we should be grateful, and in which we should rightly take pride. Our journey is not finished but we have come a long way.”
During the speech, the third Independence Day address by the President since he rose to power in 2015, he spoke on several issues, including security, the economy, social development, environmental degradation, and the 2019 general elections.
He also pledged to work towards achieved a united, peaceful and prosperous Nigeria where all can succeed.
“I want to assure you that as President, I will continue to work tirelessly to promote, protect and preserve what really matters: a united, peaceful, prosperous and secure Nigeria, where all, irrespective of background, can aspire to succeed,” President Buhari said.
As his first term draws to a close, President Buhari who is seeking another term in office stressed that progress has been made in the war against insurgency, the herdsmen/farmers crisis, diversifying the economy and more with youths at the centre of the drive.
He said, “At the forefront, have always been our youths. They have been at the vanguard of the struggle for independence. They fought in the war to keep the country united. And it was they who kept alive the struggle for democracy and human rights in our country at times when these were at risk, especially following the June 12th, 1993 election and the historic 2015 election process.
“Even today, our youths play a central role in Nigeria’s continuing progress and developments in all fields of our national endeavour – technology, agriculture, mining, engineering and especially the creative arts. Together, we are building a more diverse, inclusive and self-reliant economy.”
As a result, the President said his administration had, in the past three years, introduced many policies and programmes targeted at youth development and youth empowerment.
“We support the ‘not too young to run’ legislation aimed at giving the youths greater say in our national politics and governance,” he said.
“The school feeding programme in primary schools is aimed at encouraging enrolment and attendance. We are building on what we have already introduced to support schools and universities to which funds have recently been released for upgrade of facilities, training programs for our entrepreneurs, and rehabilitation schemes for victims of terrorism and human trafficking.”
Although the President hailed the impact of technology, he warned disruptive and corrosive forces bent on misusing the social media.