Posted by From Donald Andoor in Abuja on
Former Military Administrator of Lagos State, Brig. Gen.Muhammed Buba Marwa, formally inaugurated his presidential campaign on Saturday at the Eagle Square, Abuja with a declaration that he would strengthen and deepen the socio-economic reform programme....
Former Military Adminis-trator of Lagos State, Brig. Gen. Muhammed Buba Marwa, formally inaugurated his presidential campaign on Saturday at the Eagle Square, Abuja with a declaration that he would strengthen and deepen the socio-economic reform programme of the present regime if elected president in 2007.
Accompanied by his wife, Munirat, Marwa said the struggle in Nigeria today was that of a new socio-economic and political order which needs to be sustained for accelerated development.
In the 18-page document he read at the event, the former military administrator said "the fundamental thrust of my administration's economic policy is the consolidation, deepening and strengthening of the gains of ongoing reforms in terms of improving the living standard of Nigerians."
Marwa also said he believed in the potentials of the country to eradicate poverty in line with the demands of the UN Millennium Development Goals.
"I believe I am capable of summoning that clear vision and direction of good governance with a pragmatic social, economic and political philosophy that will extend the range and impact of the laudable reform agenda of the present government," he said.
The former military administrator spoke before a mammoth crowd of his supporters across the 36 states of the fedration.
The declaration was also attended by dignitaries which included Deputy Leader of the Senate, Senator Jonathan Zwingina, Senator Abubakar Girei, Senator Iya Abubakar, Arc, Gabriel Aduku, Prof Femi Odekunle, Mrs. Josephine Anenih, Dr. Terhemba Shirja and the British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr. Richard Grozney.
Marwa promised to give special attention to security of lives and property, housing, employment, energy, petroleum and gas, the Niger Delta, anti-corruption, women, children, sports and traditional institutions, if elected.
He also assured Nigerians that he would increase the generating capacity of the nation's electricity plants "to meet the optimal projected need of the country by pursuing on-going efforts towards stabilising the supply of electricity, like the Mambilla hydro project.
"It is common knowledge that the key impediment to optimum capacity utilisation by industries and manufacturing outfits and, by extension, losses and unemployment in various sectors, is traceable to unstable power supply,” he said.
On education, he said he would embark on an integrated programme that would strengthen the entrepreneurial, technical and information technology competencies, as well as free education to the senior secondary level.
He said he would deploy his passion and commitment to a new agricultural strategy that would expand the cultivated land beyond its current scope, by providing incentives for small scale farmers.
Specifically, he said he would follow the current efforts of President Olusegun Obasanjo toward the resolution of youth restiveness in the oil rich Niger Delta region.
"We promise to sustain the efforts and eventually resolve the Niger Delta crisis through the evolution and implementation of an all-round, integrated, master plan based on justice, equity and fair play," he said.
The new strategy, he added, would entail a comprehensive plan that would renew the environment, create jobs and infrastructure development, eradicate poverty, and eliminate conflicts through dialogue and consultation.
Marwa told the gathering that the declaration was a culmination of three years of consultations he has had with various strata of the nation.
Former Special Adviser to the Chief of General Staff on Security Matters, Odekunle, who read Marwa's citation said he was a man generally acccepted across the length and breadth of the country.
Zwingina, who spoke on behalf of the Adamawa people, Marwa's home state, said the presidential aspirant was their esteemed son, who shone as a bright star as a military governor in Borno and Lagos States and would shine brighter as the President of Nigeria.
"We recommend him to you as the president of Nigeria come 2007, because he will not let you down," Zwingina said.
Immediate past Special Adviser to President Obasanjo on Women Affairs, Mrs. Josephine Anenih, who spoke on behalf of the women said other PDP presidential aspirants had huge hurdles to scale if they desired to match the height of Marwa.
She however asked Marwa to pick a female vice presidential candidate as his running mate.
On his part, Girei from Adamawa State described Marwa as a worthy man who would serve the people to the best of his ability.
He said Adamawa State "has only one presidential candidate, and that candidate is Buba Marwa."
However, Vice President Atiku Abubakar who is known to be in the 2007 presidential race also hails from Adamawa State.
Meanwhile,a group of Nigerians based in the United States and United Kingdom have asked their compatriots at home to support the presidential aspiration of retired Brig.-Gen.Buba Marwa.
The group under the auspices of "The Marwa Movement (TMM)," made the call in Abuja at the commencement of Marwa's presidential campaign.
Speaking on behalf of the group, its Executive Director (International Affairs), Alhaji Aminu Gusau, said the need to support Marwa stemmed from "his personality, character and belief in one Nigeria.”
"Marwa is a man of honour, a patriotic Nigerian, who believes in the rule of law and due process. He is a detribalised Nigerian, who embraces and cherishes our diversity and believes in human dignity and the worth of every Nigerian,'' Gusau said.
He, therefore, urged Nigerians as they prepared to elect a new president in 2007, to elect a leader like Marwa ``with a vision, strength of character, courage, conviction and capacity to move Nigeria forward.''
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