President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday launched broadsides against those criticising his administration for allegedly not doing enough to protect lives and property. He labelled them unpatriotic.
The president, at two separate occasions in Abuja, dismissed his critics’ allegations, saying his administration is doing all it could to stem the wave of killings, banditry and kidnapping ravaging the country.
Buhari, dismissed allegations of tardiness against his administration in addressing the security challenges facing Nigeria, said there was no nation without security problems.
However, the president who spoke when he hosted the national executive body of the Buhari Campaign Organisation (BCO) in Abuja, made no reference to Obasanjo’s letter or issues raised in it.
According to him, the Nigerian situation is not unusual as challenges bordering on banditry and kidnapping are global issues.
He said: “Every country in the world has security challenges. While we have made significant progress in the fight against terrorism, we acknowledged that there are also new and emerging challenges like kidnapping and banditry.
“I assure you and Nigerians that we will not relent in our efforts to secure the country from criminal activities. Those who politicise the isolated cases of insecurity are not patriotic Nigerians.
“I’m confident that this administration uses all resources at its disposal to protect the lives and property of all Nigerians and not just prominent Nigerians or those who make headlines.”
He also said his administration would continue to fight corruption in the country.
“We will continue to be tough on the cancer of corruption. As you may be aware, the African Union (AU) in its deliberations last year appointed me as African Corruption Champion for the continent.
“This is because other countries have seen our dedication to fighting corruption and are keen to emulate our approach,’’ the president added.
The president, at another forum in Abuja, said criminals took advantage of the focus on the North-east to unleash crimes on other parts of the country.
According to him, notwithstanding the challenges, security still remains his top priority.
He said successes recorded in degrading terrorists in the North-east would be extended to various parts of the country experiencing challenges.
He spoke when executive members of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), led by its President, Dr. Francis Adedayo Faduyile, visited him at the State House.
He said anyone who could not secure a country, would also be unable to manage it.
“If you cannot secure a country or institution, you cannot manage it,’’ a statement by one of the presidential spokesmen, Mr. Femi Adesina, quoted him as saying.
Buhari also told his visitors that efforts were still being made to improve employment rate, despite the success in getting many into the agricultural sector.
According to him, opening up the economy for investments and getting the youths engaged would help in controlling crime rate.
The statement also said Buhari spoke on health and education, imploring states and local governments to play stronger roles in complementing the efforts of the federal government, especially in getting more children into classrooms.
“The issues of health and education are constitutional. If there are too many almajiris in a state, then the government is not following the constitution.
“The states also have elite who are educated enough to remind their governments about their responsibility to almajiris,’’ he said.
The statement said Faduyile had earlier congratulated Buhari on his re-election for a second term in office, saying it is the reward for his government’s efforts in repositioning the country, especially the health sector.