It’s a brand-new year and matters are already arising across Nigeria, as most of the troubles from the passing year are still rearing their ugly heads and the Presidency is delving into them headlong.
After all, it’s only about a year and a half left to the end of this administration. This is the year before a general election and the polity has kicked off right from day 1 – the decision not to assent to the Electoral Amendment Bill, and the assent to the 2022 budget have started to build the charge within the political sphere.
Below are 18 quotes from the passing week which give us a real feel about what transpired and a sense of some things we might be expecting in the days ahead.
1. “We must salvage Nigeria from bad governance.”
Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State started the year lashing out at the government. In his opinion, the present administration has not lived up to expectations, and as such Nigerians must salvage the nation from bad governance.
2. ”I am absolutely aware of Nigerians’ sufferings.”
President Muhammadu Buhari says he is absolutely aware of the sufferings and pains Nigerians go through to feed themselves and their families under his administration.
3. “Mr. President was clear and candid in expressing his reservations with the numerous changes to the 2022 Budget made by the National Assembly, which would hamper its implementation.”
Senior Special Assistant to the President, Garba Shehu, says President Muhammadu Buhari will not hamper the implementation of the 2022 budget despite the numerous changes made by the National Assembly.
4. “I don’t believe our party will go into pieces. Yes, the absence of Muhammadu Buhari on the ticket is a major thing for us, that is the reason we have to look and make sure that we have also a presidential candidate that is acceptable to all, including Muhammadu Buhari himself.”
Nasarawa State Governor, Abdullahi Sule, allays fears of the All Progressives Congress (APC) breaking up in 2023, saying he doesn’t think the ruling party will fold up after President Muhammadu Buhari’s tenure.
5. “For the Electoral Act, he faulted errors, saying direct primary will be too expensive and will affect security. But he signed something that he knows would affect the economic survival of the country negatively.”
Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State faults the signing of the 2022 budget of N17.127 trillion into law, saying Nigerians made a mistake choosing Muhammadu Buhari as president in 2015.
6. “All I said (is that) there should be options.”
President Muhammadu Buhari states his readiness to sign the Electoral Act Amendment Bill after the National Assembly made the necessary adjustments.
7. “The Camp Hope government in Imo, has become an embarrassment.”
Former Governor of Imo State Rochas Okorocha mocks the State Governor Hope Uzodimma for refusing to name sponsors of insecurity as promised.
8. “If I was to take anybody from APC … I think I will be looking at Yahaya Bello.”
A chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Segun Sowunmi, asks Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State to dump the All Progressives Congress (APC).
President Muhammadu Buhari says “failure” comes to mind whenever he hears the abbreviation “PDP”.
10. “What are drones for Christ’s sake? By now, these things should be everywhere. I wonder what is really holding us back from taking some of these steps. Today we have fantastic drones in the market that will carry out surveillance capabilities.”
Former Army Intelligence Officer, Colonel Hassan Stan-Labo (rtd) has asked the Federal Government to deploy drones in the fight against insecurity across the country.
11. “Just like previous variants, Omicron is hospitalising people and it is killing people.”
The Omicron variant of Covid-19 is killing people across the globe and should not be dismissed as mild, the World Health Organization insists.
12. “In 2022, our goals remain the same: to dismantle drug cartels and syndicates, and that include arresting and having drug offenders jailed by the court and ultimately to rid our society of all traces of illicit substances.”
Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Rtd) asks all those still involved in the illicit drug business to turn over a new leaf or risk losing their freedom and assets in the new year.
13. “Traditionally, I’m his elder brother. He should let my administration be and not bring in unnecessary interference.”
Governor Hope Uzodinma of Imo State has said that Senator Rochas Okorocha wants to remain the governor of the state even after he has left office.
14. “No, I wouldn’t say because he may be eliminated if I mention. I better keep it.”
President Muhammadu Buhari has said he will not disclose who he prefers to succeed him in office.
15. “I wish when they go to school; when they work hard; when they earn their degree, they don’t do it thinking that government must give them jobs.”
President Buhari tells Nigerian youths to use their education and exposure to improve themselves and not see them as tickets to depend on the government.
16. “In keeping with my commitment to tackle the monster of terrorism head-on, let me reassure these besieged communities and other Nigerians that this government will not abandon them to their fate because we are more than ever determined to get rid of these outlaws.”
President Buhari reacts to the latest bandit killings recorded in Zamfara State.
17. “Nigerians know that I don’t interfere with the judiciary.”
The president rules out an option of pardoning the leader of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu.
18. “This is one occasion where you will find that our country is truly a united country and that nothing can separate this country, not ethnicity or religion or class.”
Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo says Nigeria remains indivisible, stressing that religion, ethnicity, and class cannot separate the country.