President Muhammadu Buhari has implored Niger Delta militants to stop sabotaging oil facilities, as it makes investment in the oil sector of the nation’s economy difficult.
He said this at the National Executive Committee, NEC, meeting of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Abuja yesterday, where he noted that the sabotaging of oil facilities was doing more harm than good and that although some of the militants were showing readiness to stop, others were not.
“Some have said they are ready to drop their arms and join the rest of the nation to build it. But part of them are still sabotaging installations which is making investments in that lucrative area of Nigeria difficult because nobody will submit his riches to financial institutions, get money only to suffer huge loss,” he said.
He continued, “So, the environment for investment is being sabotaged by ourselves, Nigerians. We are doing our best with the military by trying to persuade them to join the rest of the country because in unity lies our strength.”
The president also noted the crash in oil prices and how it has led to the failure of 27 of the nation’s 36 state to pay salaries and blamed the previous administration for not making adequate arrangements for the rainy day. He then gave the assurance that the administration was ready to make amends by putting cost saving measures in place, including raking N3 trillion into the Treasury Single Account to reap huge benefits.
He said,“The Central Bank Governor will tell you that in the TSA, we have more than N3 trillion. Where would this money have been if TSA was not in vogue? I was made to understand that vouchers would have quickly been raised towards the end of the financial year and cheques made. Whether they are going into projects or private pockets, nobody can prove it to you. But that money is there, it is identified, it is quantified and when the budget comes back eventually, the Ministry of Finance will see how to allocate it to the rest of the country.”
Condemning the violence associated with last weekend’s Rivers State rerun elections, the president apologised for the manner in which elections in Kogi, Bayelsa, and Rivers States were conducted under his watch, promising that the next general elections will be better.
He said, “I am afraid I did not succeed in the elections in Kogi, Bayelsa, Rivers. I think that more Nigerians are killed or killed themselves in Rivers than in any particular state. At this stage of our political development, to remain brutal is shameful and as a government, I promise we will do something by the next general election.”