Feb 12, 2013 – President Jonathan Administration’ 2013 Performance Report Card Released
President Goodluck Jonathan Administration’s 2013 Performance Report card released.
Please Carefully Read through and be the Best Judge of your President, who promised a Transformed Nigeria on Assuming Office.
ROAD REPAIRS & CONSTRUCTIONS.
- Benin-Sagamu road has been awarded and presently, the commuting time has been reduced from 12 hours and above to 4 hours.
- The Lagos-Ibadan Expressway concession was decisively dealt with and immediate rehabilitative efforts were carried out by Julius Berger and RCC, which reduced the burden on commuters on that road during the Christmas holidays.
- Abuja-Lokoja Expressway is progressing steadily
- Kano – Maiduguri road is in progress
- The East-West Road despite the negative reports by detractors has made significant progress with most of its concrete works and bridges nearly completed.
- Onitsha-Enugu-Port Harcourt dual carriage way a distance of 1664km is due for completion in 2013.
- 2nd Niger Bridge – N5 Billion has been set aside for commencement of works.
- The Lagos-Jebba-Kano Rail line which has been shut down for over 20 years has commenced successful operations since December 2012
- The Abuja-Kaduna modern gauge rail line is over 35% completion.
- Ajaokuta-Warri modern garage rail line has been completed.
- A new modern gauge rail line from Lagos to Ibadan was awarded towards the end of last year.
- The Port Harcourt-Maiduguri (Eastern Rail line) completed and will start operation anytime from now.
The achievements of the Jonathan administration in the aviation sector this year alone has been commendable. Since October 2011 when the administration unveiled the Aviation Road Map intended to re-position the Nigerian aviation industry, the face of the industry has changed significantly.
Upon its inception, the Jonathan administration met an aviation industry which was on the verge of collapse. The industry was, among many other shortcomings, dogged by the absence of a well articulated aviation policy, excessive bureaucracy and bad management.
One year after, the transformation is obvious in many areas especially in the area of infrastructural development. One major area this is clearly discernible is in the area of infrastructural development. One of the key components of the aviation road map strategy was the reconstruction and re-modelling of airports and terminals, most of which were built over 30 years ago and had decayed due to passage of time.
The administration at the end of 2011 earmarked 22 airports for rehabilitation and reconstruction and by the end of October this year, over 50 percent had been commissioned for public use with. The remaining eleven would be completed in 2013. In addition to re-modelling, government will also in early 2013 begin the construction of five new airport terminals in Lagos, Kano, Port Harcourt, Abuja and Enugu as well as six cargo terminals to be managed under a Public Private Partnership (PPP) Scheme.
Clearly, these are commendable achievements, which indicate an administration attuned to the needs of the people who have for long craved a turnaround in the sector.
(22 Airports were earmarked for re-modeling and rehabilitation.
11 have been completed and commissioned. Five new terminals in Lagos, Kano, Port Harcourt, Abuja and Enugu as well as 6 Cargo Terminals will begin this year.)
Incidence of youth unemployment has been a global challenge in the last few years with Europe having over 40 percent youth unemployment. Spain and Greece have been the worst hit with 50 percent and 82 percent youth unemployment respectively. In Nigeria, unemployment figure is put at between 26 and 30 percent and this problem has been vigorously tackled by the Jonathan administration in the last two years. Programmes initiated to address this problem include:
- Employment of ten thousand youths in each of the 36 states and federal capital territory in the Public Works Sector
- Introduction of the Graduate Internship Scheme to create employment opportunities for at least 50 thousand graduates annually
- Creation of about 2 million direct and indirect jobs through various initiatives in the Agricultural sector.
- This year, a Young Graduate Commercial Farmers Scheme will be launched by Mr. President to absorb 780 thousand youths who will in turn employ between 4 and 5 persons to create about 4 million jobs in the first year.
INABILITY TO DIVERSIFY THE ECONOMY
In the last fifty years, the Nigerian economy has suffered stagnation due to inability of successive government to diversify the economy and steer it away from the mono cultural dependence on oil to the detriment of other critical economic sectors.
Specifically, this administration has re invented the wheels of the Agricultural sector and it now accounts for 75 percent of non oil exports. The cassava component of the Agricultural transformation programme has attracted 600 Billion Naira (about 380 million dollars) into the Nigerian economy from the substitution of bread wheat flour with cassava flour. Nigeria will before the end of this year earn an additional 136 million dollars from export of cassava chips.
Nigeria is today producing 3.5 million tons of rice locally and will by 2015 meet its total local demand of 5 million tons of the staple. This will save about 300 Billion Naira in foreign exchange and create jobs for our local farmers and entrepreneurs.
MAIZE AND SORGHUM PRODUCTION.
Similarly, Nigeria produced about 10 million tons of maize in 2012 while four high yielding hybrid of sorghum were provided for farmers free of charge to revolutionize sorghum production Nationwide. The same method is being adopted to bring back the lost glory of cocoa production with a view to increasing the current production volume from 250 thousand metric tons to 500 thousand metric tons in the next two years.
8 high yielding, early maturing hybrid cocoa seedlings are being distributed free of charge across cocoa producing states.
Cotton farmers, especially in the Northern part of Nigeria have been provided 1,500 tons of improved seedlings and are currently cultivating 17,319 hectares of cotton.
The value chain approach for intervention in Agriculture as an alternative revenue earner is being successfully implemented by the Federal Government. The ultimate goal is to turn Nigeria from being a major importer of food to a net exporter by 2015.
Economic stability is a necessary foundation for economic growth. This is why the Jonathan administration through the implementation of sound monetary and fiscal policies has been able to provide macroeconomic stability for the country in the last two years.
It is noteworthy that while other major economies including that of South Africa and the United States of America are being downgraded, Nigerian economy is being upgraded by global rating agencies including Fitch, S&P,JP MORGAN.
While the overall global projection for economic growth in 2013 is 3.5 to 5. 5 percent, projected growth for Nigeria has been put at 6.5 percent and above. Nigerians rightly observe that in spite of this favorable macroeconomic indicator such as increased GDP, reduced inflation, and increase foreign reserve, the population is yet to benefit by having food on their tables.
It should however be realized that achieving macroeconomic stability is the foundation upon which other economic reforms such as the investment in power sector, infrastructure and development of skilled manpower will be built. However, government, in realization of the need to make the transition period less stressful has initiated socio-economic programmes such as the various youth empowerment, wealth creation initiatives under the SURE-P,NAPEP and other agencies.
There is probably no better prove of a leaders commitment to a corruption free Nigeria than what this president has done in the area of exposing corrupt practices and ensuring that culprits are brought to book. The various reforms carried out in the last two years in the area of pension administration, management of the Nations ports, Oil and gas, Fertilizer management, Electoral process as well as the strengthening of institutional framework for fighting corruption is certainly the most courageous moves ever undertaken by any Nigerian President.
The sleaze uncovered in these processes are in consonance with the spirit and letters of the Freedom of Information Act which was the first bill signed into law by President Goodluck Jonathan on assumption of office.
Today, the President’s foresight as contained in the bill on reform of the Criminal Justice system which he initiated is underscored by the outrage which followed a light sentence given to one of the suspects in the widely reported police pension fraud. The import of this is that the President’s work in fighting corruption only needs to be complemented by the Legislative and Judicial Arms of government to have the desired effects.
No one envisaged the level of insurgency such as this administration was faced with in the last two years. It is however noteworthy that the rate at which this insurgency has been curtailed in the last twelve months is equally unsurpassed.
Due to the increased capacity of security agencies in the area of intelligence gathering, I can report to you that over 70 percent of planned insurgent attacks were foiled before actualization. These are largely unreported because they did not happen and this is a good thing.
The intelligence arm of our security agencies has deployed massive modern technology to pre-empt and destabilize these criminal elements who intended causing harm. Empirical evidence shows a gradual decline in cases of bombing and other insurgent activities.
However, government will not relent in its efforts to do even more in the coming year. In this regard the Nigeria Police Force recently trained a total number of 18,357 personnel in counter insurgency tactics to complement the heroic work being done by members of the Nigerian Armed Forces, the State Security Service and other agencies of government.
President Jonathan is deeply touched by the wanton killing of innocent citizens and destruction of properties by these criminal elements and assures Nigerians of his resolve to confront these evil groups at every opportunity.
In realizing the prime position that the agricultural sector occupies in the economic transformation of most advanced nations and in fulfillment of his electoral promise to the Nigerian people, President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration established a revolutionary agricultural programme to ensure food security, reduction of expenditure regarding foreign exchange in food import, diversification of the economy and creation of new jobs.
You will recall that prior to the advent of the administration of President Jonathan, major agricultural produce like cotton, sorghum and groundnut, which were the bedrock of the economy of Northern Nigeria were practically extinct. Considering the fact that Nigeria imported N500 billion worth of rice in 2011, one will not be left in doubt as to the need for a radical solution, which the Agricultural component of the transformation agenda is progressively providing.
In the year under review 14 new rice mills with capacity to process 240 metric tons of rice were set up by the private sector while in addition, a sum of 1.2 billion dollars was secured by the Federal Government to install 100 large scale rice processing mills to produce 2.1 million metric tons of rice annually.
Today, Nigeria has reached an unprecedented 60 per cent sufficiency in rice production, a feat, which the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) recently described as capable of raising world rice output to a record high in the next 12 next months. By the year 2014, Nigeria’s 167 million populations will feed on rice grown and processed locally as we would have attained 100 per cent self-sufficiency in rice production like we just did in the production of cement.
This and other initiatives of government in 2012 resulted in the creation of about two million new jobs among rural dwellers.
In 2013, the Federal Government will implement a Young Graduates Commercial Farmers Scheme, which will absorb 780,000 graduates in its first phase and provide an estimated four million jobs in the agricultural sector in the first year.
In the same vein, government will restructure and recapitalize the Nigeria Agricultural Bank to provide loans to peasant farmers at single digit interest rates. This will be the most remarkable fund injection initiative ever undertaken by any government to empower rural peasant farmers and create wealth for rural dwellers.
Export of dried cassava chips began in July 2012 and this represented the first time that Nigeria will achieve commercial scale export of dried chips, which will earn $136 million annually in foreign exchange. Also, improved cotton seedlings, which have been provided free of charge to farmers especially in the northwest and northeast geo-political zones, will result in the resuscitation of the upstream and downstream cotton/textile sub-sector before the end of 2013.
[Credit: Hope For Nigeria]