The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Yakubu Dogara, has assured Nigerians that 2016 offers a real opportunity for change in the country. In a New Year message signed by his special adviser on Media and Public Affairs, Turaki Hassan, the speaker praised the unshakable commitment of leaders at all levels of government to a better Nigeria.
He cited the pro-people 2016 budget of President Buhari’s administration which is before the National Assembly and said , “when passed into law and faithfully executed will not only lift the common man from abject poverty, it will also usher in the much needed opportunities for innovation and investment that are the engines of economic growth and prosperity.”
The Speaker who expressed hope that happy times will be here again, however, maintained that, “the people must go to work to make it happen as government alone cannot solve all our problems”.
He said that “democracy and governments do not build nations but it’s rather citizens of democracy who must take up the tools of democracy and embrace the opportunities created by their government that build the nation of their dream.”
The Speaker urged all Nigerians to abhor the culture of passivity and apathy which only produces docile citizenry and added that: “On our part, the National Assembly must also go to work as the central institution of democracy through which the will of the people is expressed. As parliamentarians, we can no longer afford to remain observers or mere onlookers but actors. Our work is more urgent than before because the change we seek must not be anchored on the quick sands of expediency but on the enduring solid rock of legislative frameworks that deal with corruption, eliminates gender based violence, strengthens democratic institutions, reinforces human rights and good governance. We must also not fail the nation in ensuring effective scrutiny of the national government to ensure implementation of all legislative frameworks.”
While suing for peace and unity among all Nigerians irrespective of regional, ethnic, political or religious affiliations, he urged the citizens to be security vigilant and support the fight against terrorism and sundry crimes in the country.
“As 2016 dawns with hopes anew, filled with promises of a brighter tomorrow; with courage, faith and great effort we shall achieve all we desire. I wish all Nigerians a happy and prosperous New Year and pray that our nation attains greater heights in the New Year,” the speaker said.
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