Stop Fueling Insurgency – BMO To Politicians

The Buhari Media Organisation (BMO) has accused a Federal lawmaker representing Borno State in the House of Representatives of making wild and exaggerated claims on the insurgency in North East Nigeria.

The lawmaker, Ahmadu Jaha (APC, Damboa/Gwoza/Chibok), had said during plenary on Tuesday that Boko Haram insurgents are occupying eight of the 10 local government areas in the northern part of the state. 

BMO said in a statement signed by its Chairman Niyi Akinsiju and Secretary Cassidy Madueke that Jaha was not being factual 

“It is disturbing that a Federal lawmaker could so turn facts on its head by making a wild claim that presupposes that the insurgents are in total control of about a third of the 27 local government areas of the state.

“As a representative of areas that had witnessed some of the worst atrocities committed by Boko Haram in the course of the insurgency, Ahmadu Jaha has a duty to draw attention to the plight of the people he represents. But he and other members of the political elite also need to be circumspect in order not to rubbish efforts by officers and men of the Armed Forces to make their community safer.

“Here is a politician whose constituency once housed the headquarters of the caliphate declared by the Boko Haram terrorists and it is on record that the convoy of three traditional rulers led by the Emir of Gwoza Mohammed Shehu-Timta, was attacked.

“Now, the Emir who was forced to relocate to Maiduguri where he stayed for five years has returned home and is now fully in charge of the traditional institution, yet a politician based in Abuja irresponsibly claimed that the town is under the control of insurgents.

“We are also aware that Jaha made that claim on the same day that the Chief Whip Mohammed Monguno had said in a lead debate in the House that before the advent of the current administration, about two-thirds of the local government areas in Borno State, were under the control of the insurgents who not only hoisted their flag but also administered the areas with their own rules and regulations. 

 “Does Representative Jaha want Nigerians to believe that the insurgents have their flag in Gwoza, not to even talk about 8 local government areas like he claimed.

“Granted that there had been pockets of attacks in some communities like Monguno who is also from the state said, but there is no way that this can be described as an occupation of those areas”, BMO added.

The group consequently advised members of the political class to resist the pressure of rubbishing the sacrifices of the Armed Forces when they have the opportunity to speak on issues of national security.

“It is alarming that some politicians, especially in the theatre of military operations, are not capable of handling TV appearances or are unable to check themselves when they have the opportunity to speak in public.

“In this case, members of the House of Representatives had had a lengthy closed-door session with heads of security agencies where, we believe, the situation in North eastern Nigeria was thoroughly discussed and a decision taken to give legislative backing for a special fund for the agencies outside of the national budget.

“So it beggars belief that a politician whose constituents are certain to benefit from heightened security operation opted to publicly dismiss military efforts in one –third of the epicentre of the insurgency with a carefree comment. 

“We expect the House leadership, especially the majority caucus, to deal well with the situation to ensure that discipline is maintained on issues of national security.”

BMO also urged Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila and the military authorities to keep to their pledge of regular interface with a view to overcoming all barriers to effective field operations.

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Timi Frank Is Atiku’s Hireling, Says Group

A political group has said that former All Progressives Congress deputy national publicity secretary is a hireling of Peoples Democratic Party presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar.

The Initiative to Save Democracy (ISD) in a press statement signed by Oladele Peter, Publicity Secretary of the group on Thursday in Lagos said it had pictorial evidence to prove that Mr. Frank his doing the bidding of his paymasters.

It would be recalled that Mr Frank, a self-styled political activist came under fire on Wednesday night following a retraction by a national daily, Vanguard Newspaper of a libelous statement made by him against Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.

He said Mr Frank is working for the opposition and its presidential candidate, Mr Atiku. He explained more evidences were emerging of their transaction including a meeting in Dubai where the plan was hatched.

“The picture is clearer now, Mr. Frank, a renegade and castaway from APC is doing the bidding of his master but legal actions will put all his toothless claims to rest.

“As Nigerians we have allowed fake news to fester for too long and that has to stop, we need to check fake news through all legal means possible and that is why I am happy that the Vice President has taken this route,” he said.

He said a source within the new strategies adopted by the PDP’s presidential candidate to boost his desperate quest to upturn the electoral victory of President Muhammadu Buhari through the Supreme Court co-opted Mr Frank.

“The young man’s campaign of calumny against the Vice President is deliberate and the aim is to discredit APC in order to whip up public sentiments for Atiku. I tell you the point-by-point dismissal of his (Atiku’s) petition by the election petition tribunal has devastated them.

“Really, the judgment by the tribunal thoroughly exposed them as frivolous in thinking. Now, they believe the only way they can help their case is by raking up mud against a principal officer of the Buhari government in order to look good at the Supreme Court.”

Frank was said to have started life as “a political jobber in Bayelsa during the administration of D. S. P. Alamiesiegha with reputation for doing any dirty job.”

At the founding of All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2014, the Bayelsa-born jobber was nominated and sponsored to become the deputy Publicity Secretary of the party by Mr Atiku.

Soon afterwards, he was said to have revealed himself as “divisive influence” who delighted in working against party’s interest and opposing popular views at party meetings “just to attract attention to himself”.

His real agenda became clearer when he started issuing unauthorized statements as APC’s deputy publicity secretary to the embarrassment of the leadership of Chief John Odigie Oyegun and became a willing tool in the sustained campaign to discredit the party and shove Oyegun aside.

Expectedly, he joined the bandwagon of Atiku when the latter eventually decamped from APC last year to vie for the presidency on PDP’s platform.

“Timi Frank will be used as an example, if the Vice President does not press libel charges, the Initiative to Save Democracy will do it, we need sanity in our country and we don’t need fake news that will divide us,” he said.

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Osinbajo Not Corrupt, Opposition Behind Fake News – Sagay

Professor Itse Sagay SAN, Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC), on Tuesday described Vice President Yemi Osinbajo as “an incorruptible man of God who is as clean as a whistle”.

Speaking in a chat with INDEPENDENT on the corruption allegations levelled against Osinbajo, Sagay said his Committee did not receive any report indicting Osinbajo in any way.

He accused the opposition of being the brain behind the malicious rumour, adding that having failed at the courts, they were desperately trying to cause disaffection in the Presidency.

“Our Committee received no report indicting the Vice President in any way. Absolutely nothing! The Vice President is an incorruptible man of God, a man of high moral standing who is as clean as a whistle. He will not appropriate any money that doesn’t belong to him to himself.

“The Vice President is not having any issue with President Buhari. All these malicious reports and fake news are being sponsored by the opposition and enemies of the government and it should be disregarded,” he said.

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I Will Waive My Constitutional Immunity To Clear My Name – Osinbajo

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, has declared his readiness to waive his constitutional immunity to “enable the most robust adjudication” of several baseless allegations, insinuation and falsehoods against his person and office.

Prof. Osinbajo made this declaration in a tweet he personally authored this afternoon.

Below is the full text of his tweet:

“In the past few days, a spate of reckless and malicious falsehoods have been peddled in the media against me by a group of malicious individuals.

“The defamatory and misleading assertions invented by this clique had mostly been making the social media rounds anonymously.

“I have today instructed the commencement of legal action against two individuals, one Timi Frank and another Katch Ononuju, who have put their names to these odious falsehoods.

“I will waive my constitutional immunity to enable the most robust adjudication of these claims of libel and malicious falsehood.”

Laolu Akande
Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity
Office of the Vice President
25th September, 2019

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‘Be Wary Of Opposition Gimmick, Osinbajo Not Facing Any Threat’ – APYF Assures

The attention of the All Progressives Youth Forum (APYF) has been drawn to a press release in circulation attributed to the Coalition of Northern Nigerian youth in which the group cautioned against the maltreatment of Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.

We understand that the statement by CNNY was largely based on the widespread rumor of a ‘cabal war’ against the vice president, but we must clarify that there is no threat or any form of maltreatment against the person of Mr. Vice President.

As young people with significant contacts within the government and the party, we have made our findings and come to the realization that the imaginary witch hunt of Professor Osinbajo is a mere opposition gimmick aimed at causing disaffection in the Presidency and cause crisis of confidence between President Muhammadu Buhari and his vice. The fictitious story of a 9 billion naira election fund which was made against vice president Osinbajo by a certain opposition figure further confirms this grand opposition conspiracy.

APYF is not the only group that has seen beyond the smokescreen of a nonexistent ‘witchhunt game’ against the Vice President. Many discerning individuals and organizations within and outside the country have since realized that the news of any threat against Prof. Osinbajo or his office is just a grand opposition conspiracy.

Just recently, the Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC), Professor Itse Sagay SAN, clarified that “The Vice President is not having any issue with President Buhari. All these malicious reports and fake news are being sponsored by the opposition and enemies of the government and it should be disregarded.”

APYF also holds the position that there is no threat of any nature against the Vice President. We also wish to add that the tact team led by President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo which put an end to long years of misrule of the PDP in 2015 is still intact and remains impenetrable as ever. And as usual, the team is committed to its goal of revamping the economy of Nigeria, stamp out corruption and ensure the greatest happiness of the greatest number of Nigerian people. No distraction would take their attention away from actualising these objectives.

Finally, as a formidable youth group within the ruling party, the APC, we wish to reiterate that if at anytime we become aware of any threat against the person of Vice Professor Yemi Osinbajo from any quarters, we would stand by the Vice President who we are sure will also continue to receive the support and backing of his principal, President Muhammadu Buhari, in his dedicated service to Nigeria and her people.”

Signed By
Alwan Hassan,
National Field Director,

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President Buhari Condoles Von DG, Osita Okechukwu, On Loss Of Wife

President Muhammadu Buhari sympathizes with Mr Osita Okechukwu, Director-General, Voice of Nigeria, on the loss of his wife of 30 years, Tina, aged 57.

The President shares in the grief of the Okechukwu family at this time of distress, asking God to console and comfort them.

Losing a dear wife and mother, President Buhari opines, is time of deep travail for any family, particularly one who was so devoted, and a rallying force for the household.

The President laments the loss of a true Nigerian, who had schooled in Kano, Enugu-Agidi in Anambra, her state of origin, Maiduguri, and Sango-Otta, Ogun State, thus fluent in Igbo, Yoruba and Hausa, among other languages.

The Okechukwu family, the President says, should draw succour from God Almighty at a time like this, and take comfort in the quality of life the departed lived.

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BMO Lauds Global Award For Buhari’s Social Investment Programme

The Buhari Media Organisation (BMO) has applauded the recent endorsement of the Social Investment Programme (SIP) of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration by the World Economic Forum (WEF). The award was conferred on Nigeria at the WEF’s Impact Summit in New York, United States on Monday, September 23, 2019.

The group also opined that the profound leadership of President Buhari, driven by sincerity, honesty, diligence and top-notch diplomacy is responsible for Nigeria’s improved international status at the World body and the comity of Nations.

In a statement signed by its chairman Niyi Akinsiju and Secretary Cassidy Maduke, BMO said it is obvious that the people-oriented programmes put in place by the Buhari administration is attracting international encomiums as some countries are now understudying the policy and adopting them for their countries.

“In fact, it has become a reference point for poverty reduction globally.

“The Social Investment Programme has impacted positively on over 40 million Nigerians, with a long term target to remove about 100 million people out of poverty in ten years.

“With this recognition, it is crystal clear that the Buhari administration has enunciated the right policies and programmes towards alleviating the plight of the poor in the country, and the international recognition will no doubt spur the Buhari administration to sustain the tempo”.

BMO noted further that the determination and commitment of the Buhari administration to eradicate poverty in Nigeria “is resolute and unwavering” and enjoined Nigerians to continue to support the administration in this direction.

Commenting on President Buhari’s plea at the World body for the recharging of Lake Chad, the group said that the call was motivated by the President’s concern for the 45 million people who sourced for their livelihood from the emaciated Lake Chad.  

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Timi Frank’s Comments On FIRS, Nonsensical, Untrue And Misleading – ISD

The Initiative to Save Democracy has responded to the claims by PDP stalwart, Timi Frank that 90 Billion Naira was used from the FIRS to prosecute the 2019 elections stating that this claim was uncalled for, untrue and misleading.

The Pro-Democracy Group in a statement by its Publicity Secretary Peter Oladele stated that the statements issued Timi Frank were blatant fake news and an abuse of the constitutional right to freedom of speech, further stating that all the “so-called activist wanted was to muddy clean waters with an absolute untruth from nowhere, and attempt to smear the names of good men.”

“It is disheartening to see the very medium to inform and enlighten citizens being used as a tool for spreading rumours and propaganda. The recent statements by Comrade Timi Frank, making its runs on several media platforms, hauling unfathomable accusations at the Vice President and the FIRS boss is one of such misuse of media.”

The group highlighted that reports by the FIRS already made clear that the agency had not received up to N100 billion per annum  as Cost of Collection from the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee, FAAC, a public institution, whose records are a matter of public records and thus to insinuate the agency supported the APC, through the Vice President Yemi Osinbajo with N90 billion in the concluded election is outrageous and outlandish. 

“The FIRS is neither a money dispensing or electoral funding organisation, and like several other organizations, they have processes and structures before a single dime can be spent. The FIRS Budget and expenditure approval processes pass through the Budget Office and the Ministry of Finance, after which they are presented to the National Assembly for Appropriation into Law. The National Assembly committees, consisting of all parties – whether PDP or APC – exercise oversight function on all agencies of the Federal Government to ensure agencies keep to the letters of the Appropriation Act.”

“Thus FIRS’ operations are subjected to scrutiny and close monitoring by the National Assembly, the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee and the Ministry of Finance. There is therefore no way such an amount as claimed by Timi Frank could have been expended without it being sighted by either of these institutions.”

ISD further stated that: “To believe the preposterous existence of the alleged sum is to accuse esteemed individuals of collusion and oversight but more detrimental, is to undermine the great work of the outstanding members in such offices. To insinuate that these governmental organizations are involved in electoral misconduct is an affront to public trust and an insult to our democracy as well as the electoral process.”

“What makes a source credible is the presence of verifiable proofs, however Mr Frank has provided none of such because the events portrayed in his statement are factless and borderline vindictive. They are baseless accusations which only seek to destroy the confidence placed in the government and its organizations and processes by her people.”

The democracy group urged the media houses to conduct due diligence by fact checking articles as well as conduct their own investigative journalism to avoid being pawns and tools by scrupulous, ill meaning and self serving individuals like Timi Frank.

It further urged Nigerians not to be too hasty in believing the worst and to weigh information they come across especially those from questionable media outlets before forming and spreading opinions.

“We must not loose the trust instilled in the administration and her members, as a house divided amongst itself cannot stand.” It added.

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Reducing Extreme Poverty & Hunger, One Of Our Cardinal Objectives, Says President Buhari As Nigeria Launches SDGS’ Planning Tool

President Muhammadu Buhari Tuesday in New York said that “reducing extreme poverty and hunger is one of the cardinal objectives” of his administration.

Delivering the keynote address at the Nigeria High-Level Side-Event on “SDG Integration – Bridging the Policy Planning – Budgeting Gap for the Achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals,” which held on the margins of the 74thSession of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA74), the President noted:

“It is for this reason that in May this year, we committed ourselves to lifting approximately 100 million Nigerians out of poverty within a 10-year period. This is a national development priority and in line with the aspirations of the SDGs. We have since established an ambitious National Social Investment Programme (NSIP) targeting the poor and vulnerable members of the Nigerian population.”

According to him, “Through the National Social Investment Programme (NSIP), we are tackling and addressing the root causes of poverty in all its manifestations. For example, the Home Grown School Feeding Programme (HGSF) component is feeding almost 10 Million school pupils daily and empowering over 90, 000 local catering staff across the country.”

On the need to overcome ad hoc planning for the SDGs, President Buhari said among others:

“It was our genuine desire for scientific planning and implementation of the SDGs that made Nigeria to commence the process of domestication and customization of the Integrated Sustainable Development Goals Model in 2017.

“The Nigeria iSDG Model, the Report ofwhich we will officially launch today, will serve as a framework for robust, fact-based policy analysis, planning and implementation at all levels of government. It is expected to be used as a planning tool to complement existing ones currently in use at the national, sectoral and sub-national levels.”

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FG To Fix Roads To Ease Fuel Distribution, Commuting –Fashola

The Minister of Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola SAN, has assured Nigerians that critical roads across the country, particularly those leading to fuel depots would soon be fixed in order to enhance fuel distribution and ease the usual high traffic during the ember months.

Fashola spoke in his office in Abuja while responding to a request by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) for urgent intervention by the Ministry on some roads leading to fuel depots without the distribution of petroleum products during the festive months could be seriously hampered.

The Minister, who assured that arrangements were already being put in place to fix such roads and a number of those which conditions had deteriorated as a result of heavy rainfalls, listed such selected roads to include Suleja-Bida-Lapai-Lambata;Oyo–Ogbomosho-Ilorin;Jebba-Mokwa-Tegina;Benin-Sapele-Warri;Benin-Auchi-Okenne;Enugu-Onitsha;Awka-Amansea and Odukpani-Itu roads.

On the state of the listed roads, Fashola explained that the Suleja-Lambata-Minna Road was in a fairly good condition adding that the failed portions were slated for emergency repairs during the ember month’s programme while work is ongoing on the Bida-Lapai-Lambata Roads where the contractor handling it has already stabilized a substantial part of the road.

The Bida–Minna Road, the Minister explained, is a Niger State Government Road and is in a fairly good condition while the Suleja –Lambata –Minna Road; is a Federal Government road under SUKUK funding.

Disclosing that his Ministry had commenced discussions with the contractors handling the various road projects for the commencement of repair and rehabilitation works as soon as the rains subside, Fashola said approval has been given for the Engineering Corps of the Nigerian Army to repair the bad portions of the Bokani-Makaera-Tegina-Birnin Gwari Road in Niger and Kaduna States, which is currently under procurement, due to the security situation in that axis.

He further explained that funding has also been a challenge, adding that the Federal Government would endeavour to meet its financial obligations to the contractors handling the various road projects to ensure that they returned to the sites.

He said work on the Oyo-Ogbomosho-Ilorin Road is on-going by the contractor handling the project, which, he explained, is one of the projects that received dedicated funding under SUKUK. According to him, although the project is being challenged by the current weather situation and funding, the old alignment of the Oyo-Ogbomosho route is receiving palliative attention.

On the Ilorin –Jebba –Mokwa Road, which is under a dualization contract, Fashola explained that the project has been divided into two sections with Ilorin –Jebba in Kwara State as Section1: while Section II comprises Jebba–Mokwa–Bokani Junction in Niger State adding that it is a new project and mobilization was still being processed.

For Okene–Lokoja Road, which is in four sections and under SUKUK funding, he explained that all the contractors handling the various sections had been directed to do palliative work on the failed portions of the road.  

He said while a Federal Government appointed contractor is currently working on the Enugu –Onitsha Road, the bad portions of the Awka –Amansea Road are being repaired by the Anambra State Government.

For the Odukpani –Itu Road, the Minister said the contracting firm which is handling the project, has left the site as a result of the challenges of the weather situation and funding adding that the Ministry is currently intensifying efforts to address the challenges for the company to return to site as soon as possible.

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Nigeria Tackling Corruption Head-On – President Buhari Declares At The UN

“The present Nigerian government is facing the challenges of corruption head-on,” President Muhammadu Buhari declared Tuesday in New York.

Presenting the country’s National Statement as the fifth speaker on the first day of the General Debate during the 74th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA74), the Nigerian leader also warned:

“We are giving notice to international criminal groups by the vigorous prosecution of the P&ID scam attempting to cheat Nigeria of billions of dollars.”

Holding social media outlets responsible for fuelling major crimes such as mass killings, President Buhari called on major tech companies to be alive to their responsibilities, adding that, “They cannot be allowed to continue to facilitate the spread of religious, racist, xenophobic and false messages capable of inciting whole communities against each other, leading to loss of many lives. This could tear some countries apart.”

He also declared that, “No threat is more potent than poverty and exclusion,” noting that, “They are the foul source from which common criminality, insurgency, cross-border crimes, human trafficking and its terrible consequences draw their inspiration.”

Describing poverty “as one of the greatest challenges facing our world,” President Buhari noted that, “Its eradication is an indispensable requirement for achieving sustainable development,” while highlighting his administration’s efforts to overcome the challenge.

On the 2019 presidential elections, he said “our people backed the politics of tolerance, inclusion and community over the politics of protest and division.”

In his speech reproduced below, the President reaffirmed Nigeria’s position on certain issues which impinge on global peace, security, progress, democracy and development.

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How President Buhari Plans To Lift Millions Out Of Poverty – Osinbajo

The Federal Government’s policies and programmes aimed at promoting financial inclusion remain key to the actualization of President Muhammadu Buhari’s promise of lifting millions of Nigerians out of poverty, according to Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN.

Prof. Osinbajo stated this in Abuja on Tuesday at the opening session of the 2019 Annual Conference of Chartered Institute of Bankers.

He was referring to the President’s June 12 speech where he stated that “we are working to lift Nigerians out of poverty and set them on the path to prosperity. We intend to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty over the next 10 years”.

According to the Vice President, “Financial inclusion of course is the key to realizing so much of what we expect as an economy and the President promised in his June 12 speech to lift 100 million people out of poverty in ten years, that is the commitment of the government of Nigeria.

“We started that journey with our collaboration with the Bank of Industry to deliver the GEEP programme, better known as TraderMoni and MarketMoni by providing microcredit to almost 2 million petty traders. The Bank of Industry has now brought this huge bottom of the pyramid into the formal financial system and that has been recognized worldwide. Recently the programme won the AfDB prize for financial inclusion because of the work that was done with TraderMoni. This is a huge task.

“Going forward, we now need to embark on financial training for all of those who have been brought into the net. As you know, when they’re given N10, 000 and they pay back, they are given N15, 000, N20, 000 and it goes all the way. But at that point they’re given their BVNs, they’re formally included in the financial system, they’re formally included as formal traders, and so we are able to give them financial training and all that.”

Continuing, the Vice President said “…for very long, that bottom of the pyramid has been completely excluded and yet informal trade is a significant part of trading that is going on in our country.

“So, there’s a real need out there and we must devise the methods by which those at the bottom of the pyramid can be uplifted and we must look at how we can even resource the entire value chains. What we find is that the petty trader, who just has a trade, is usually selling little bits and pieces from many of the manufacturers or fast-moving products and we found that just by giving them credit, we can resource the whole value chain all the way up.”

Speaking further on what the Federal Government intends to do in improving opportunities for those at the bottom of the pyramid, Prof. Osinbajo said “we’re working with the Bank of Industry, with several players in the market, especially the marketing services people to identify how to work through those value chains so that more of these people can move from petty trading, higher up in the value chain as they’re resourced”.

He urged stakeholders in the banking sector to support government’s efforts in resuscitating the MSMEs and real sectors.

He said “All of that will depend on what the banking industry is prepared to do, how adaptable the banking industry will be to giving loans, especially microcredit. Everything is changing very quickly.

“We must create good jobs and opportunities. We must rapidly industrialize, we must provide the environment for local businesses, small and large to create wealth and value. We must also address the concerns of young entrepreneurs and startups, and the small traders, the millions at the bottom of the economic value chain, the millions at the bottom of the pyramid, those who sell from their trays and table tops all over the markets in our country.

“We must develop the housing sector both to provide much needed shelter but also to boost local opportunities in the local building and building materials sectors. We know that we must ramp up our agricultural production, and provide a more efficient farm-to-market value chain, again creating millions of jobs in farming and Agribusiness generally.”

Laolu Akande

Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media & Publicity 

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