Thursday, January 1, 2015

[Full Text] President Jonathan's New Year Message To Nigerians.

I know how short attention span is these days. So, I'm not going to add to the long text. Read the meassage before and drop your comments in the comment section after...

'Dear Great People of our nation,
1. I greet and felicitate with you all
as we enter the New Year today.
As we mark the beginning of this
New Year, 2015, a new nation is
being born. A new nation is being
born because of the foundations
we have all laid, working together
for the good and progress of our
dear fatherland.
2. I join you all in thanking God
Almighty who has brought us this
far, for continually bestowing His
Grace upon us and for guiding our
great nation safely through all the
challenges of the past year.
3. This year, as in the year past, I
reaffirm my commitment to work
to ensure a secure future for our
dear country and the generations
yet unborn.
4. Last year, we celebrated our
hundredth year of nationhood. The
year brought us further progress,
challenges and fresh opportunities.
5. We have contended with the
normal challenges of nation-
building and the unusual
challenges of terrorism.
6. But we have continued to
vigorously confront those who seek
to destroy the bonds of unity that
hold us together.
7. On this first day of the New Year,
I want to pay special tribute to the
gallant officers, men and women of
our Armed Forces and other
security agencies who have been
in the forefront of the war against
terrorism and violent extremism in
our country and sub-region.
8. I also commend all Nigerians
who have remained vigilant and
cooperative with our security
agencies in the fight against the
common enemy.
9. We are re-equipping and re-
positioning our armed forces to
enhance their capacity to win the
ongoing war against terror and
insurgency.
10. Regrettably, terrorists have
unleashed much pain and agony
on our land. They have made
widows of our mothers and sisters
and orphans of our children. They
have shut down businesses,
desecrated places of worship and
brought untold hardship to both
men and women. They have
violated the culture and peaceful
way of life in our country, which
took generations to build.
11. They have destroyed countless
schools and displaced people from
their communities, driving them
into exile.
12. I want to assure you that the
terrorists will not get away with
their atrocities: they will not win;
they will be routed. As President, I
feel the pain of all affected
communities and families. I hear
their cries and share their sorrow
and pain.
13. We will not forget; we will not
look the other way. We have done
a lot of painstaking planning and
work to resolve the current
security challenge. We will bring
justice to the savage terrorists
known as Boko Haram. They will be
defeated.
14. That is the solemn
commitment I make today as
President of the Federal Republic,
and Commander-in-Chief of our
Armed Forces.
15. By the Special Grace of God,
the Federal Government, under
my leadership, has continued, in
the past four years to lead our
country forward, even under the
most trying circumstances.
16. The progress we have made in
priority areas bears us testimony.
17. Amongst other achievements,
we have rehabilitated and
expanded our rail transportation
network, successfully privatized
power generation and distribution,
significantly reformed and
increased local participation in our
oil and gas industry, and improved
nationwide access to potable water
from 57% in 2010, to 70% at
present.
18. We have also made significant
progress in improving access to
primary, secondary and tertiary
education by building and
equipping more schools, including
special Almajiri schools, and
establishing additional universities
to ensure that each state of the
nation now has at least one
Federal University.
19. Our national economy
maintained a steady growth rate of
close to seven per cent in the past
four years and millions of fresh
employment opportunities were
created for our people as a direct
consequence.
20. Recently, we launched the
Youth Employment in Agriculture
Programme (YEAP) and the $100
million dollars Government and
Donor Fund for Agriculture Finance
in Nigeria (FAFIN) to fast-track the
positive transformation of our
agricultural sector.
21. The Youth Employment in
Agriculture Programme (YEAP)
targets 750, 000 market-oriented
young agricultural producers while
the $100 million dollars Fund is to
provide affordable long-term
financing to support the
development of small and medium
agribusinesses in the country.
22. This is in addition to a N50
billion Farm Mechanization Support
Fund set up by the Central Bank to
establish 1,200 agricultural
equipment-hiring enterprises.
23. Both funds will become fully
operational this year. Policies and
programmes such as these to
boost agricultural production
remain topmost on the agenda of
this administration.
24. Being very conscious of the
inherent perils of our over-reliance
on income from crude oil exports
for national development, we have
focused on accelerating the
diversification of our economy.
25. The non-oil Sector which has
grown by an average of 8% in the
last few years, is now a major
driver of growth in our economy.
26. The 2015 national budget,
which is now before the National
Assembly, is targeted at
deepening our efforts at becoming
a non-oil economy.
27. The budget also includes
measures to ensure that the
downturn in the price of oil does
not affect our development plans
and our national economy too
adversely. We are adjusting our
financial processes to safeguard
our economy. We are also taking
steps to ensure that the poor and
the low and medium income
earners do not bear the brunt.
28. In 2015, this administration will
continue to lay the foundation for a
vibrant economy that attracts
significant Foreign Direct
Investment and promotes policies
that ensure economic stability.
29. We will ensure stability in the
value of the Naira by striving to
take away speculative behaviours
that cause market exchange
pressures.
30. We will continue to build and
maintain a healthy external
reserves position and strengthen
fiscal buffers. We will ensure the
Naira remains strong, and gives
foreign investors the clarity and
certainty that they need, to guide
future investment decisions.
31. We will continue to improve
our payment systems and
strengthen risk-based supervision
mechanism for Nigerian banks to
ensure overall health and stability
of the banking system.
32. We are introducing a broad
spectrum of financial instruments
to boost sector-specific enterprise
areas in agriculture, Micro, Small
and Medium Scale Enterprises
(MSMEs), manufacturing, and oil
and gas to enhance our aggregate
supply capacity, reduce poverty,
promote job creation and increase
the general well-being of our
people.
33. These efforts and other
measures being spearheaded by
relevant Ministries, Departments
and Agencies, are geared to
ensure a secure future for Nigeria
and create a much more
prosperous country, where people
live more peaceful and fulfilled
lives.
Fellow countrymen and women,
34. As we enter an election year, I
assure you that our administration
will remain fully focused on
providing good governance and
the delivery of better public
services to our people.
35. The coming campaigns and
elections will not distract us from
our ongoing work to significantly
improve the living conditions of our
people. And I urge all tiers of
government not to be distracted as
well.
36. The elections are very
important for us as a country. Their
successful conclusion will further
strengthen our democratic
institutions and place our beloved
country even more firmly in the
comity of truly democratic nations.
37. Given the challenges that have
characterized some previous
electoral contests in our country,
the eyes of the world will certainly
be on the conduct and outcome of
our fifth post-military rule general
elections.
38. I reassure all Nigerians and the
international community of our
firm commitment to free, fair and
credible elections. My commitment
to free elections and one man, one
vote remains unwavering.
39. Our administration has worked
hard in previous elections to
prepare all key stakeholders
including the Independent
National Electoral Commission
(INEC), security agencies and the
electorate optimally, to ensure a
progressively improved electoral
process in the country under my
watch. We will continue to do so for
the coming elections.
40. We will continue to provide
adequate funding to INEC and
maintain the Commission's
independence and isolate it from
any form of interference or
meddling in its day-to-day affairs.
This shall continue to guarantee its
impartiality and ability to conduct
more credible and acceptable
elections.
41. National security agencies will
also be given all necessary support
to enhance their ability to ensure
that the elections are peaceful and
violence-free. The Nigeria Police
has already established an
Elections Security Planning and
Monitoring Unit.
42. I am optimistic that with the
cooperation of all law-abiding
citizens of the country, our
commitment to have a peaceful
and violence-free election will be
actualized.
43. I will like to say this, once
again, to my fellow politicians and
political leaders. None of our
political ambitions is worth the
blood of any of our countrymen,
women and children. The
improvement of their lives and
living conditions ought to be our
primary motive and the driving
force of our quest for political
power and leadership positions.
44. Let us not promote
sectionalism, disunity, intolerance,
hate, falsehood or the malicious
abuse of political opponents.
Whatever we feel or seek, we must
have a nation and a people before
we can dream of political
ambitions. Let us put the nation
and the people first.
45. Let us all conduct our electoral
campaigns with the highest
possible decorum and civility
towards political opponents. Let us
give INEC the fullest possible
support and cooperation it requires
to conduct credible and violence-
free elections in 2015.
46. After the 2011 general
elections, some unpatriotic
elements embarked on an Fun of
violence, resulting in the
destruction of lives and property.
That will not be allowed to happen
this time around. This government
will act decisively against anyone
who disrupts the public peace,
before, during or after the 2015
general elections.
47. All Nigerians, of voting age, are
free to vote based on their
convictions. It is our duty to defend
and protect that basic right, and let
no one be in doubt, we will.
48. Fellow Nigerians, I urge all of
you to enter the New Year with
renewed zeal and patriotism, to
serve our fatherland with love,
honesty, faithfulness and hope for
a greater tomorrow.
49. As I have always maintained,
none of the challenges before us is
insurmountable. We must come
together as a people and work with
single-minded unity of purpose to
overcome them.
50. Nigeria is a key country in
Africa. We must work together to
maintain our strategic position and
collaborate with others to move
the continent forward. I call for
peace in Africa and an end to all
conflicts in our continent. I urge all
Africans to promote democracy in
their respective countries to
ensure faster development of the
continent and faster economic and
political integration.
51. We will continue to pray and
offer hands of fellowship and
assistance to our fellow Africans
suffering from the Ebola Virus
Disease. I urge all Nigerians to
show compassion and contribute in
whatever way we can to help our
African brothers and sisters.
52. As we go into this New Year, I
salute the indomitable and
resilient spirit of our people in
Nigeria and wherever they are in
the world. Our spirit of enterprise
and the doggedness to succeed
amongst all odds has been our
strength.
53. With our collective prayers and
efforts, we will grow our economy
and our people will become
wealthier. Government will
continue with programmes
deliberately designed to create
more jobs for our youth, to enable
them contribute more to the
growth and development of our
nation.
54. Let us continue our march to
the future, towards the attainment
of our collective vision of a strong,
united, prosperous and
harmonious nation – a secure
nation for us and for our coming
generations.
55. I wish you all a happy and
fulfilling 2015.
56. God bless the Federal Republic
of Nigeria.
57. Happy New Year, Nigeria!
58. I thank you all.'

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