Jonathan Challenges Critics As He Gives Mid-Term Report!


President Goodluck Jonathan on Wednesday gave a mid-term report of his administration to Nigerians and the whole world. In the course of the presentation, he challenged critics of his government to develop their own marking scheme and conduct an objective assessment of the performance of his administration in the past two years.
President Jonathan pointed out that his two years performance should be compared with those of previous Nigerian leaders and other African leaders.
The President, a former university lecturer also took time to address critics. He urged them to develop a marking scheme. Using the analogy of a typical examination, President Jonathan observed that to mark a student’s script, there has to be a marking scheme. “Develop your marking scheme and mark us,” the president told critics and observers.
Prior to the president’s speech, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim, Minister of Finance, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, and the Minister of National Planning, Shamsudeen Usman, had spoken and relayed the performance of the government under President Jonathan.
Anyim noted that incidences of corruption had reduced drastically, he also disclosed that citizens now have more confidence in the Nigerian judiciary.
Dr. Okonjo-Iweala disclosed that the administration has continued to record success in its war against corruption. She gave the example of the petroleum sector in which the number of petrol importers had been reduced from 143 to 32, while several billions of naira had been recovered from marketers indicted in the probe of the subsidy sector and other fraudulent importers being prosecuted.
She also pointed out to Nigerians that the country’s dependence on crude oil as its only major export has been reduced. She said crude oil export now accounts for only 70 per cent of Nigeria’s exports with the rest being agricultural produce and manufactured goods, among others.
Okonjo-Iweala also said the exchange rate has remained stable under President Jonathan at between N155-N160 to a dollar. She said Nigeria’s external reserves are rising, and inflation has reduced. She said Nigeria’s borrowing has also decreased yearly since 2011.
Some other achievements listed by Dr Okonjo-Iweala are the construction of about 61,800 housing units across Nigeria by the Housing Ministry; an improvement in local cement production to about 28 million metric tonnes, more than local need; and the construction of 13 new rice mills across Nigeria.
The Finance Minister also spoke of the improved rail sector, noting that rail users had increased by over 3 million people between 2011 and now.
While she also stated that the Federal Government paved 651km of roads across Nigeria in 2012.
The event was attended by three former rulers of Nigeria, Gen Yakubu Gowon (rtd), Alhaji Shehu Shagari and Chief Ernest Shonekan. Generals Olusegun Obasanjo,Muhammadu Buhari, Ibrahim Babangida and Abdulsalami Abubakar were absent. The Speaker of the House of Reps, Aminu Waziri Tambuwal too was conspicuously absent.

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