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Legacies I want to leave behind, by Obasanjo

Posted by From Chido Okafor (Warri) and Chukwuma Muanya, (Lagos) on 2005/04/26 | Views: 737 |

Legacies I want to leave behind, by Obasanjo


BEFORE he vacates office, President Olusegun Obasanjo has assured that the virtues of accountability, transparency, service delivery and due process would be fully institutionalised in the polity.

BEFORE he vacates office, President Olusegun Obasanjo has assured that the virtues of accountability, transparency, service delivery and due process would be fully institutionalised in the polity.

Nigeria, he also said, would become a country where things work.

He said the entrenchment of these core values of governance are legacies he wants to engrave in the minds of the citizens, who he described as yearning for good leadership.

At the graduation ceremony of the Petroleum Training Institute (PTI) Effurun, Delta State, at the weekend, Obasanjo said his administration had started shaking the foundation of corruption in the country.

The President pledged to forge ahead with the on-going socio-economic and political reforms because to do otherwise would be disastrous for Nigeria.

Obasanjo said the results already obtained from the reforms were encouraging and had showed that the Federal Government's efforts had not been in vain.

He said his administration had pruned waste in the public sector, improved on service delivery and cut cost of governance.

His words: "The Federal Government is unwaveringly committed to entrenching a culture of good governance, transparency, accountability, due process, and service delivery in all dealings in both the public and private sectors".

He added that the zero-tolerance for corruption in all its ramification had instituted probity in the management of the Nigerian state, pruned waste in the public service and reduced generally, the cost of governance.

His address was delivered at the event by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Hajia Ammuna Lawan-Ali. He said the government had stepped up efforts to ensure the security of life and property in the country by acquiring two modern surveillance and patrol helicopters and 1000 customised motorcycles for the police..

This, the President said, was in addition to the reform, restructuring and re-orientation process that have taken off in the police.

"These factors all combine to raise the nation's investment profile significantly. This improved investment climate is one that operators of the oil and gas industry can, and should tap into", Obasanjo said.

Obasanjo therefore urged operators in the oil and gas industry to enter into partnership with the government in its effort to transform the PTI into a first class institution for the development and production of indigenous skilled manpower at all levels for the Nigerian petroleum sector.

He added that the government was committed to the PTI upgrade project and that the Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF) would continue to fund and supervise the scheme to ensure that PTI facilities and human resources were brought to the highest level.

In the graduation lecture, by some experts in the gas industry including Hameed Onipede, former principal of the PTI; and the Managing Director Warri Refining and Petrochemicals Company, Mr. E. Idahosa, they agreed that privatisation of refineries and public companies would create competition needed to boost the nation's economy as well as break government's monopoly.

Also the senior Special Assistant to the President and Head of Budget Monitoring and Price Intelligence Unit, Mrs. Oby Ezekwesili, the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory in the presidency, Mallam Nasir Ahmad el-Rufai and the President of the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE), Mr. Mustapha Bulama have asked Nigerians to take position on corruption.

They spoke at the weekend in Abuja when the Nigerian Society of Engineers conferred fellowship award on Works and Housing Minister, Senator Adeseye Ogunlewe.

Ezekwesili said: "We are in a corruption war and make no mistakes about it, every Nigerian must take a stand. You have a choice. You can either stand with those fighting to deal with the monster that has held our nation prostate or you can choose to stand with the assuredly losing side of the corrupt and their army of worshippers."

She said: The visible adverse impact of corruption on Nigeria were the absence of basic social goods and services.

Many Nigerians, she said, were beginning to make the connection between the large-scale corruption that had become a pattern of governance and the inability of successive governments to provide social infrastructure upon which private initiative or enterprise thrives.

"If we hope to reach the Millennium Development Goal of halving the number of people living in extreme poverty by 2015, governments need to seriously tackle corruption in public contracting," he said.

El-Rufai also charged the NSE to maintain professional ethics among its members and to advance the interest of engineering in Nigeria. "To what extent have you promoted, protested, encouraged and maintained a high standard of engineering study and practice designed to encourage greater efficiency in Nigeria?"

He called on Nigerians "to redress a negative phenomenon, corruption, that has retarded the growth of our society."

Bulama asked the National Assembly to facilitate the passage of the Draft Bill on Public Procurement. The bill when passed into law will address problems associated with public procurement.

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Comments (3)

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Abieyuwa(Edo, Nigeria)says...

Otasowie means evening life is better than morning life. There is an error in your “evening life is better than evening life”?

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Naija g(Houston, Minnesota, US)says...

Sokari doesn’t mean joy. Joy is Biobela. Go to the village and ask the meaning of the name.

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Fay(Katy, Texas, US)says...

Actually translates to bravehearted.