Posted by News Express | 2 January 2016 | 2,206 times
President Muhammadu Buhari has set up a committee to rehabilitate infrastructure and resettle Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the North-East sub-region ravaged in the past six years by Boko Haram insurgency.
Buhari said Friday that the committee is soon to be formally inaugurated and is to be led by Lt.-Gen Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma (rtd), with Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, as one of the members.
Speaking at the State House, Abuja, in response to a goodwill message delivered to him by a group, Women In Politics Forum (WIPF), President Buhari announced that all forms of assistance and aid in this respect generated locally and from foreign countries as promised by the Group of Seven of Industrialized Countries (G7) will be channeled through the committee when it is inaugurated.
He said that he had compiled a list of damaged infrastructure, including schools and bridges, and handed it to the leaders of the G7 and the United States. “I didn’t ask for a kobo (in cash). It is up to them to choose what they will undertake. Already, some of them have sent teams to verify our assertions,” he said.
The Nigerian leader decried the impact of the Boko Haram violence on women and children, declaring that they are its worst victims.
“In the North-East, what I saw for myself and on those clips is a source of concern for people with conscience. They are mostly women, and children who are orphaned. Some of them don’t even know where they come from. This is the pathetic situation in which the country has found itself,” President Buhari said.
He said that the fight for the return of the abducted Chibok girls is ongoing and “continues to be a most worrying issue” to his government, emphasising that the administration will do all within its powers in making the best efforts to secure their freedom.
The President acknowledged the case made by the WIPF for better representation of women in his government and assured that women would fare well in the composition of parastatals and their boards in the first quarter of this year.
He also defended the records of the administration in response to criticism that it is slow, arguing that steps must taken with caution to avoid mistakes.
“People say we are slow. We are trying to change structures put in place by our predecessors in office for 16 years. If we hurry it, we will make mistakes. That will be a disaster,” he stated.
Buhari assured that the country has a budget proposal for the new year that is good for employment and manufacturing. “By the end of the second quarter, the full impact of these positive measures will be felt,” he told the visiting women.
The WIPF, made up of women leaders from 26 registered political parties led by Barrister Ebere Ifendu of the Labour Party, expressed their full support for the government’s war on corruption and insecurity.
The group asked the Buhari administration to usher in laws to promote gender equity as well as action towards the implementation of the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act.
•Photo shows Committee Chairman, TY Danjuma.
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