As part of last-minute efforts to woo the electorate to vote massively for him in Saturday’s presidential election, President Goodluck Jonathan has highlighted his achievements in office, stating with confidence that he will win the election because Nigerians know that he has delivered in the last four years, Thisday reports.
In a document released on Tuesday titled: “My Vision for Nigeria,” Jonathan also unveiled his plan for Nigeria if re-elected president, stressing that his plan is to build on the platform he has laid to deliver growth, prosperity, peace and justice for all so as to take Nigeria to the next level.
In a brief history of his background, Jonathan stated that he has no sense of entitlement, and does not come from a profession or background that believes it has some “God-given right to rule”.
According to him, he is the president of Nigeria because of the will of the people and would remain the president because of the will of the people.
He added that the future he sees and works for is for a country that works for all, a country where mothers and children do not die due to lack of medical attention and a country where children are not out of school or go to bed hungry.
“Indeed, my dream is that someday, a product of the Almajiri schools becomes the president of this great country. It will be a Nigeria where justice is not measured in any currency but available even to the most vulnerable in our society. My vision is that of a Nigeria that works for all, and not just a few,” he said.
He welcomed what he called the challenge of a vigorous campaign, saying that though democracy needs competition, it should be the right type of constructive competition.
On his efforts in the areas of security and education, Jonathan said his administration had formed a formidable coalition with Cameroun, Chad and Niger to effectively dismantle Boko Haram.
He stated that everywhere that terror had been successfully tackled, it was through partnership, adding that that was why his government championed the partnership.
The president noted that Boko Haram’s claims of a caliphate had been shown to be as empty and bankrupt as the rest of its hateful philosophy, adding that Nigeria remains one and undivided.
Jonathan, who also pledged to rout Boko Haram, further saluted what he described as the extraordinary courage of the families of the Chibok girls, promising that his government would never give up on them.
“In the next four years, we will build on the progress we have made so far. Our military efforts, both domestic and through international cooperation has enabled us make progress in our fight against Boko Haram. We will expand and intensify our military presence in the affected region and communities to ensure that we leave no gaps for Boko Haram to take advantage in the future.
“We will continue to equip the military and other security agencies to meet the security challenges of modern Nigeria,” he said.
He also stated that the federal government was implementing three strategic security initiatives that would be the focus of his administration in the next four years.
He identified these initiatives to include the Safe Schools Initiative (SSI), the Presidential Initiative for the North East (PINE), and Nigeria’s Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) programme.
He stated that education is the key to his transformation plan, adding that his dream was that one day, a product of the Almajiri schools, which his administration established will become president of Nigeria.
He promised that in the next four years, no child would be out of school in Nigeria, as Nigerian schools would not only be safe, but would also be centres of excellence that mould national characters.
“We will reverse the brain drain in our universities and tackle the most critical important challenge to university education in Nigeria – access and quality. We will devise a sustainable and effective system for our university education to bring it up to global standards,” he added.
Promising high quality healthcare for all Nigerians, the president stated that Nigeria produces some of the finest health care professionals but has not had the health care system the general public deserves.
According to him, in the next four years, he would lay the foundation for Nigeria to become a centre of medical excellence in Africa, and begin to reverse the embarrassing trend of medical tourism.
He praised the bravery of Dr. Stella Ameyo Adadevoh and other heroes who identified the Ebola virus, cared for the sick, and paid the ultimate sacrifice.
On the economy, he stated that following the rebasing of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) last April, Nigeria’s economy, estimated at $510 billion for 2013, is now the largest in Africa.
He stated that the country’s economy had been growing at an average of seven per cent per annum in the past decade.
He also stated that between 2012 and 2014, his administration created 2,826,552 jobs.
“The World Bank recently released its 2014 Nigerian Economic Report (NER), providing the most up to date analysis of poverty and living standards in the country. It provides evidence that Nigeria’s poverty rate is significantly lower than what had been previously reported.
“From the survey, it is estimated that 33.1 per cent of the population lived below the poverty threshold in 2013,” he explained.
He acknowledged that the recent fall in oil prices had significantly impacted the country’s revenues and the value of naira but promised to remedy this.
According to him, in the next four years, his administration shall rebuild the country’s reserves, “shore up the value of the naira, grow our economy, and create wealth.”
He also pledged to build on his successes to date by turning Nigeria into a global powerhouse in food and agriculture.
On his vision in the oil and gas sector, Jonathan said his administration would end the importation of petroleum products in the next four years, and become a net exporter of petrol.
He said his government would also conclude the structural changes required to make progress in the sector as contained in the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) by working with the National Assembly to pass it and ensure its effective implementation.
“Under my watch, we will end gas flaring and consolidate on the progress made under the local content law to ensure that Nigerians are full participants and not mere middlemen in the oil and gas businesses in the country,” he said.
Jonathan further stressed that Nigeria is greater than any individual, adding that long after the individual ceases to exist, Nigeria will continue from generation to generation.
“We therefore must approach our decisions in governance, the economy, and in society putting Nigeria first,” he said.