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Archive for the tag “Rigging”

The saga goes on and its called the NRM Primaries

Postpone NRM

Yet another day and the NRM Primary are postponed again. That is not really news when it happens with so often. There have been issues in the areas that already have had local council elections. Now it’s more elections for the candidates for MPs and Presidential. Before the continuation there been reports of military police going to areas of the NRM Primaries before starting of casting the votes, even mini-buses being shipped in between the areas to secure that certain individuals are winning the elections. In Kasese the losers of the local elections deflected from NRM towards the Go-Forward Ticket, and mean they no longer stand by the Mzee, but instead for Amama Mbabazi.

Norbert Mao of the DP is saying this on social media: “Have you heard? I hear the NRM primaries postponed…again! There is something rotten in Sevoland”.

NRM PRimaries Pre Ticket

IGP Kale Kayihura even had to say this before the primaries:
Due to several violent incidents that have characterized the party primaries in the recently concluded elections, we felt it’s important to alert the country that the State is in control and will not allow any violence” (…)”Primaries must take place without violence; people must know that elections are not warfare” (Segawa, 2015).

The Chairman of NRM Electoral Commission Dr. Tanga Odoi said this:
“She is trying to destroy the party by trying to rig elections. We have credible evidence that she was trying to rig the eledctions” (…)”Nantaba was involved in a scam, she has to report to the NRM vice chairman, Hajji Moses Kigongo and apologize before I can act” (Kamugisha, 2015).

Dr. Tanga Odoi has been claiming that a candidate has been trying to rig the primaries election. This one is Aidah Nantaba. The claim is that she with a gang of folks went into Luzira and took ballot papers. Even with doing so, she still lost her mandate to Moses Karangwa in Kayunga district (Kamugisha, 2015).

The Secretary of the NRM Justine Lumumba said this recently:
“Those party members were rejected by voters in the party. They should not be talking about standing as independents now. They should be rallying behind candidates elected by voters in the party primaries. If they go ahead and stand as independents, the party constitution will be used to expel them” (…)”As a person responsible for supervising the NRM electoral commission, I have never received any complaints regarding the NRM primaries shortcomings. If I did, I would have resolved them. As far as I am concerned there are no complaints from the two party leaders for me to resolve” (Lukoma, 2015).

This weekends actions in Kashenyi in Ngoma Sub County:
“The minister of state for Justice also Deputy Attorney General Mr. Mwesigwa Rukutana and city businessman Bob Kabonero, the proprietor of Kampala Kasino were on Friday evening arrested and held hostage by voters over bribing electorates” (…)”This comes after the scuffle began when one of Mr. Justus Karuhanga’s Supporters Mr. Jamada Mawanda arrested by Mr. Rukutana at his rally, was tied up and beaten by his supporters, and put into a vehicle belonging to the minister on handcuffs” (…)”The Ntungamo district police commander Baker Kawonawo confirmed the scuffle at Kashenyi trading centre in Ngoma Sub County on the Uganda Rwanda border but dismissed the assault of Rukutana. Mr. Rukutana also denies being beaten up arguing that the scuffle only involved supporters (…)”Mr. Rukutana, Mr Herbert Nyongozi and Mr. Amon Kamugyene) at her home Irenga Ntungamo sub county on Saturday evening with the three candidates accusing Mr. Rukutana of using his position to threaten them out of the race. They also accused him of bribing votes and intimidating them” (MK News Link, 2015).

There have been reports of even more postponing of the primaries in Kiruhura District. It has been postponed after the main candidate suffered a fatal death in a car accident on the Masaka – Mbarara road on Saturday even. The sudden death of Michael Nyamuguri Kananura was the comping MP aspirant of Kiruhura. This postponement came as a request from major stakeholders in the area (Twesigye, 2015).

Mawogola NRM

Like earlies report is that their fires as Sembabule in the town of Mawogola today! That is where the police have been shootings into the crowds. To top it all of the police have actually has shot directly at people’s houses in the area. A lot of people have ended up being hurt by the shootings.

Sembabula NRM NBS

In Kinkiizi East earlier today, there has been exposed trying to elaborately vote rigging. Where Mr. Chris Baryomunsi had pre-ticked NRM ballot tickets in his car and this got found out by a crashing that set vehicle before reaching Kanugu.

At the Kasese Police Station there are impounded cars owned by MP Mbahimba over trying to bribe voters. Therefore the car is set in the compound of the police right now (Kahungu, 2015).

In Mbale there also been actions and the police has arrest 32 people, allegedly for planning to disrupt the primaries in Bungokho South. The suspects are now under detentions in the Mbale Central Police Station (Omagor, 2015).

In Jinja there have been reported coming more police and security agents ahead of the Primaries in town yesterday (Walukamba, 2015). At the same day Annet Musika commented this: “the NRM primaries in Jinja are likely not to be free and fair because of bribery” (Gulumire, 2015).

What you think? Seem like there will be issues. Especially with reports of rigging and trying to rig it! There are so many issues that it seems like Dr. Tanga Odoi has not total control of the movement on the ground. Tamale Mirundi must have a field day and will call him out again. How the candidates and the police even arrest people. Shows that there are deeper issues and with the reports from earlier NRM Primaries proves the quality and how it is mended to fix certain candidates instead of honoring the members with their will. That is not a good luck before the main General-Election coming 2016. Especially with evidence of pre-ticket ballots and violence from the Police at every turn. The NRM party is showing frictions and also that their struggles with the different wings of the party. Especially when one part loses or is rigged lose, they shifts to Amama Mbabazi or goes independent. Then the Electoral Commission of the Party will expel the individual who does so. That proves that there is some arrangements that is hurting the Party and that the NRM Electoral Commission is not honoring the members like we saw earlier this year. Peace.

Reference:
Gulumire, Andrew – ‘Jinja Woman Parliamentary Aspirant Quits NRM Primaries’ (25.10.2015) link: http://ugandaradionetwork.com/story/jinja-woman-parliamentary-aspirant-quits-nrm-primarie

Kamugisha, Samuel – ‘Tanga Odoi To Minister Nantaba: Apologise Within Four Hours Or Be Arrested’ (26.10.2015) link: http://www.hotspot.ug/2015/10/26/tanga-odoi-to-minister-nantaba-apologise-within-four-hours-or-be-arrested/

Kahungu, Thembo – ‘Police Impound MP Mbahimba’s Vehicle Over Voter Bribery’ (26.10.2015)
Link: http://ugandaradionetwork.com/story/mp-mbahimbas-vehicle-impounded-over-voter-bribery

Lukoma, David – ‘Minister Nantaba, Nankabira Face Expulsion From NRM’ (26.10.2015) link: http://news.ugo.co.ug/minister-nantaba-nankabira-face-expulsion-from-nrm/

MK News Link – ‘NRM Election Violence: Minister Rukutana, Bob Kabonero Assaulted by opponent’s supporters’ (25.10.2015) link: http://mknewslink.com/nrm-election-violence-minister-rukutana-bob-kabonero-assaulted-by-opponents-supporters/

Omagor, Javier Silas – ‘Mbale Police Arrest 32 Ahead of NRM Primaries’ (26.10.2015)
Link: http://ugandaradionetwork.com/story/mbale-police-arrest-32-ahead-of-nrm-primaries#ixzz3pg5tAbN2

Segawa, Nixon – ‘Kayihura Warns Against Violence in NRM Primaries’ (25.10.2015) link: http://chimpreports.com/kayihura-warns-against-violence-in-nrm-primaries/

Twesigye, Faluku – ‘Kiruhura NRM Primaries Postponed’ (25.10.2015) link: http://www.redpepper.co.ug/kiruhura-nrm-primaries-postponed/

Walukamba, Aldon G. – ‘Security Beefed up ahead of Jinja NRM Primary Elections’ (25.10.2015 Link: http://ugandaradionetwork.com/story/security-beefed-up-ahead-of-jinja-nrm-primary-elections

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Uganda – Some reports from the Local Primaries Election in the NRM-Party

MuseveniNRM2016Election

If you thought the weekends reactions to the FDC party and their struggles to do party work and campaigning that has been an issue for a long time. The interesting about what I have seen and gotten news about, is how the Police and the Public is reacting in the ruling NRM-Party! While doing their duties to vote in the Primaries Election. So they can pick the ones to elect their own local leaders and who set to represent their area and a possible MP in the future. NRM-Regime goes even too far with the rigging and malpractices with the NRM Electoral Process and Commission who let this practices happening. We can see what has happen today and the reports are staggering, also with the former day’s events in Ngarama and Lwengo. All of the reports from National Resistance Movement Primaries should be seen as a warning. This is not looking good and with all the reactions the results and local disarray can be seen as the people see through the malpractices and rigging.

First issues – Ngarama:

“Supporters of Mr Benon Matsiko Kyampa, who was contesting for NRM flag for Ngarama LC3 top seat stormed the sub-county headquarters where they abandoned their party cards protesting poll results announced by the sub-county registrar, Mr Robert Baingana, in favour of Mr Silver Kiiza”. This led to even rubber bullets and agony in the district. So the way the police is used to quell issues is really a pattern. Which lead to this: “The deputy RDC Isingiro, Mr Damiano Turyatunga, said they will investigate why police fired bullets and will ensure calm is restored in the area” (Mugume, 2015).

Second issues – Lwengo:

“Ruling NRM party supporters in Lwengo District have threatened to boycott party primary elections over alleged inflation of voters registers. The supporters claim that a big number of registers in the district have been bloated with names of people who are not NRM supporters- something they say is a plot to rig votes in favour of some candidates” (…)”Ms Nakabira said she had discovered that some NRM village registers contain several names than those in the national voters register of the Electoral Commission. “Our party electoral commission should not bother bringing election materials to Lwengo District if they fail to sort out this mess. It will be a political suicide to take part in an election where registers have been filled up with ghost names,” she said” (Malik, 2015).

There have been reports that the District Leader George Mutabazi has fled the offices and area with the ballot boxes.

Sembabula NRM Office

Third Issue – Sembabule:

There been reports of fraud there in local elections as well and the NRM members couldn’t accept it. Therefore they set the NRM office on fire this 13.10.2015.

Fourth Issue – Kyannamukaaka, Masaka District:

Because of electoral issues and vote rigging NRM members has put on fire their member cards and also been as vile as peeing on Museveni T-Shirts as an reactions to rigging of the local elections. More from the Masaka District is that NRM has withheld the elections results and the reasons are that the winners in the district are suspected to be friendly to Amama Mbabazi. This is happening today!

Also from another source is this:

“This afternoon, Masaka District NRM party Registrar declared Ssekiwala winner after polling 2664 votes against Ssebulas 1780 votes. However, the declaration of Ssekiwala as winner has not gone down well with Ssebulas supporters” (Bindhe, 2015).

Fifth Issue:

There was another NRM office that was lit on fire. This was Isingiro on Sunday 3: AM, it apparently destroyed the older files from 2011 Elections and a dozen other party official papers.

Second Source:

She however, wants the complaints to produce evidence to substantiate their claims of rigging” (…)”Angry voters throwing pelting NRM party cards after disagreeing with NRM party officials at Endinzi sub county headquarters in Isingiro district” (Kabasongora, 2015).

Six issue – Bundibugyo:

“According to Idrisa, initially, Kifunga announced Steven Mugisa as the winners of the Bubukwanga Sub County chairperson NRM party ticket but later altered the results and declared his rival George Baluku” (Muhindo, 2015).

NRM 131015

Praise for the NRM Electoral Commission:

While this has happen during the elections in the NRM there are certain people who are impressed by the work. MP Cecilia Ogwal said: “”Dr. Odoi should be reassigned to assist Kiggundu because what he is doing is so impressive” (…)”We feel the impact of their confusion and I want the process to be peaceful” (Okino, 2015).

We can all see that there is a tone in the day and recent days when it comes to the NRM Primaries. The results and reactions show the issues that this Primaries Elections in the NRM are turning into a farce. Where the actual election doesn’t really matter and members of the party feels fooled. Therefore going into means that are harsh realities are not sinking in.

This is important when the ruling elite and the main NRM-Regime are shielding in a way. They are shielding the elite and handpicking their loyal candidates, but not the ones that might be wished from the grassroot-organization who might want another candidate and get a change of leadership. With the rigging happening then the exercise and voting is just a planned move so that it looks like a democratic choice. That is what is happening if you score away the local constituencies from picking their men or woman to be representatives. This is what has happen. And that makes the process illegitimate. The representative won’t actual represent the people, but the rigging Electoral Commission of the NRM. The Local Council and MPs might be “elected”, but in reality just picked by the Commission not the people of the Party and Organization. When there has already been famous for the rigging of the General Election in 2011. This here is a new low. Yoweri Kaguta Museveni party is rigging itself and people are reacting. This can only get more interesting. Just as this picture from a Cell in a Prison where they kept the Electoral Ballot Boxes for the Primaries in the area. This was taken photo from somebody kept in Prison of the FDC. Peace.  

NRM Material from Sanga Jail 101015

Reference:

Bindhe, Edward – ‘Angry NRM Supporters Burn, Urinate on Museveni T-Shirts’ (13.10.2015) Link: http://ugandaradionetwork.com/story/rioting-nrm-losers-burn-cards-urinate-at-museveni-t-shirts-as-pro-mbabazi-candidates-denied-victory#ixzz3oSx6lNLZ

Mugume, Chris – ‘Residents throw away NRM cards over vote rigging’ (09.10.2015) link: http://www.monitor.co.ug/News/National/Residents-throw-away-NRM-cards-over-vote-rigging/-/688334/2905272/-/pmw73q/-/index.html

Okino, Patrick – ‘Ogwal praises ‘impressive’ work done by Odoi’ (13.10.2015) link: http://www.elections.co.ug/new-vision/election/1343246/ogwal-praises-impressive-odoi

Malik, Fahad Jjingo – ‘NRM voters threaten polls boycott’ (13.10.2015) link: http://www.monitor.co.ug/News/National/NRM-voters-threaten-polls-boycott/-/688334/2910484/-/ra7fg1/-/index.html

Muhindo, Patrick – ‘Bundibugyo NRM Members Return Cards Citing Mismanagement of Primaries’ (13.10.2015) Link: http://ugandaradionetwork.com/story/bundibugyo-nrm-members-return-cards-over-mismanagement-of-party-primaries#ixzz3oSy1V3SW

Kabasongora, Mariam – ‘NRM Officials Rush to Bukanga County to Calm Down Angry Voters’ (13.10.2015) Link: http://ugandaradionetwork.com/story/nrm-leaders-security-team-rush-to-bukanga-county-to-quell-tension-among-angry-voters-#ixzz3oSyUjfPS

Gen. Muhammade Buhari – First Speech after Military Coup, 31 December, 1983 and General Ibrahim Babangida – Speech on 27. August 1985 after overthrowing Gen. M. Buhari

Buhari

General Muhammadu Buhari’s first speech after the Coup d’etat 31. December 1983:

In pursuance of the primary objective of saving our great nation from total collapse, I, Major-General Muhammadu Buhari of the Nigerian army have, after due consultation amongst the services of the armed forces, been formally invested with the authority of the Head of the Federal Military Government and the Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. It is with humility and a deep sense of responsibility that I accept this challenge and call to national duty.

As you must have heard in the previous announcement, the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (1979) has been suspended, except those sections of it which are exempted in the constitution. The change became necessary in order to put an end to the serious economic predicament and the crisis of confidence now afflicting our nation. Consequently, the Nigerian armed forces have constituted themselves into a Federal Military Government comprising of a Supreme Military Council, a National Council of States, a Federal Executive Council at the centre and State Executive Councils to be presided over by military governors in each of the states of the federation. Members of these councils will be announced soon. The last Federal Military Government drew up a programme with the aim of handing over political power to the civilians in 1979. This programme as you all know, was implemented to the letter. The 1979 constitution was promulgated.

However, little did the military realise that the political leadership of the second republic will circumvent most of the checks and balances in the constitution and bring the present state of general insecurity. The premium on political power became so exceedingly high that political contestants regarded victory at elections as a matter of life and death struggle and were determined to capture or retain power by all means. It is true that there is a worldwide economic recession.

However, in the case of Nigeria, its impact was aggravated by mismanagement. We believe the appropriate government agencies have good advice but the leadership disregarded their advice. The situation could have been avoided if the legislators were alive to their constitutional responsibilities; Instead, the legislators were preoccupied with determining their salary scales, fringe benefit and unnecessary foreign travels, et al, which took no account of the state of the economy and the welfare of the people they represented.

As a result of our inability to cultivate financial discipline and prudent management of the economy, we have come to depend largely on internal and external borrowing to execute government projects with attendant domestic pressure and soaring external debts, thus aggravating the propensity of the outgoing civilian administration to mismanaged our financial resources. Nigeria was already condemned perpetually with the twin problem of heavy budget deficits and weak balance of payments position, with the prospect of building a virile and viable economy.
The last general election was anything but free and fair. The only political parties that could complain of election rigging are those parties that lacked the resources to rig. There is ample evidence that rigging and thuggery were relative to the resources available to the parties. This conclusively proved to us that the parties have not developed confidence in the presidential system of government on which the nation invested so much material and human resources. While corruption and indiscipline have been associated with our state of under-development, these two evils in our body politics have attained unprecedented height in the past few years. The corrupt, inept and insensitive leadership in the last four years has been the source of immorality and impropriety in our society.

Since what happens in any society is largely a reflection of the leadership of that society, we deplore corruption in all its facets. This government will not tolerate kick-backs, inflation of contracts and over-invoicing of imports etc. Nor will it condone forgery, fraud, embezzlement, misuse and abuse of office and illegal dealings in foreign exchange and smuggling. Arson has been used to cover up fraudulent acts in public institutions. I am referring to the fire incidents that gutted the P&T buildings in Lagos, the Anambra State Broadcasting Corporation, the Republic Building at Marina, the Federal Ministry of Education, the Federal Capital Development Authority Accounts at Abuja and the NET Building. Most of these fire incidents occurred at a time when Nigerians were being apprehensive of the frequency of fraud scandals and the government incapacity to deal with them. Corruption has become so pervasive and intractable that a whole ministry has been created to stem it.

Fellow Nigerians, this indeed is the moment of truth. My colleagues and I – the Supreme Military Council, must be frank enough to acknowledge the fact that at the moment, an accurate picture of the financial position is yet to be determined. We have no doubt that the situation is bad enough. In spite of all this, every effort will be made to ensure that the difficult and degrading conditions under which we are living are eliminated. Let no one however be deceived that workers who have not received their salaries in the past eight or so months will receive such salaries within today or tomorrow or that hospitals which have been without drugs for months will be provided with enough immediately. We are determined that with the help of God we shall do our best to settle genuine payments to which government is committed, including backlog of workers’ salaries after scrutiny.

We are confident and we assure you that even in the face of the global recession, and the seemingly gloomy financial future, given prudent management of Nigeria’s existing financial resources and our determination to substantially reduce and eventually nail down rises in budgetary deficits and weak balance of payments position. The Federal Military Government will reappraise policies with a view to paying greater attention to the following areas: The economy will be given a new impetus and better sense of direction. Corrupt officials and their agents will be brought to book.

In view of the drought that affected most parts of the country, the federal government will, with the available resources, import food stuffs to supplement the shortfalls suffered in the last harvest. Our foreign policy will both be dynamic and realistic. Africa will of course continue to be the centre piece of our foreign policy. The morale and combat readiness of the armed forces will be given high priority. Officers and men with high personal and professional integrity will have nothing to fear.
The Chief Justice of Nigeria and all other holders of judiciary appointments within the federation can continue in their appointments and the judiciary shall continue to function under existing laws subject to such exceptions as may be decreed from time to time by the Federal Military Government. All holders of appointments in the civil service, the police and the National Security Organisation shall continue to exercise their functions in the normal way subject to changes that may be introduced by the Federal Military Government.
All those chairmen and members of statutory corporations, parastatals and other executive departments are hereby relieved of their appointments with immediate effect.

The Federal Military Government will maintain and strengthen existing diplomatic relations with other states and with international organisations and institutions such as the Organisation of African Unity, the United Nations and its organs, Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, ECOWAS and the Commonwealth etc. The Federal Military Government will honour and respect all treaties and obligations entered into by the previous government and we hope that such nations and bodies will reciprocate this gesture by respecting our country’s territorial integrity and sovereignty.

Fellow Nigerians, finally, we have dutifully intervened to save this nation from imminent collapse. We therefore expect all Nigerians, including those who participated directly or indirectly in bringing the nation to this present predicament, to cooperate with us. This generation of Nigerians, and indeed future generations, have no country other than Nigeria. We shall remain here and salvage it together.May God bless us all. Good morning.

Babangida-MILLITARY-DICTATOR

The Coup d’etat speech from Ibrahim Babangida: 

This was in 27. August 1985:

Fellow Nigerians,
When in December 1983, the former military leadership, headed by Major-General Muhammadu Buhari, assumed the reins of government, its accession was heralded in the history of this country. With the nation at the mercy of political misdirection and on the brink of economic collapse, a new sense of hope was created in the minds of every Nigerian.

Since January 1984, however, we have witnessed a systematic denigration of that hope. It was stated then that mismanagement of political leadership and a general deterioration in the standard of living, which had subjected the common man to intolerable suffering, were the reasons for the intervention.

Nigerians have since then been under a regime that continued with those trends. Events today indicate that most of the reasons which justified the military takeover of government from the civilians still persist.

The initial objectives were betrayed and fundamental changes do not appear on the horizon. Because the present state of uncertainty, suppression and stagnation resulted from the perpetration of a small group, the Nigerian Armed Forces could not as a part of that government be unfairly committed to take responsibility for failure. Our dedication to the cause of ensuring that our nation remains a united entity worthy of respect and capable of functioning as a viable and credible part of the international community dictated the need to arrest the situation.

Let me at this point attempt to make you understand the premise upon which it became necessary to change the leadership. The principles of discussions, consultation and co-operation which should have guided decision-making process of the Supreme Military Council and the Federal Executive Council were disregarded soon after the government settled down in 1984. Where some of us thought it appropriate to give a little more time, anticipating a conducive atmosphere that would develop, in which affairs of state could be attended to with greater sense of responsibility, it became increasingly clear that such expectations could not be fulfilled.

Regrettably, it turned out that Major-General Muhammadu Buhari was too rigid and uncompromising in his attitudes to issues of national significance. Efforts to make him understand that a diverse polity like Nigeria required recognition and appreciation of differences in both cultural and individual perceptions, only served to aggravate these attitudes.

Major-General Tunde Idiagbon was similarly inclined in that respect. As Chief of Staff, Supreme Headquarters, he failed to exhibit the appropriate disposition demanded by his position. He arrogated to himself absolute knowledge of problems and solutions, and acted in accordance with what was convenient to him, using the machinery of government as his tool.

A combination of these characteristics in the two most important persons holding the nation’s vital offices became impossible to content with. The situation was made worse by a number of other government functionaries and organisations, chief among which is the Nigerian Security Organisation (NSO). In fact, this body will be overhauled and re-organized.

And so it came to be that the same government which received the tumultuous welcome now became alienated from the people. To prevent a complete erosion of our given mandate therefore, we had to act so that hope may be rebuilt.

Let me now address your attention to the major issues that confront us, so that we may, as one people, chart a future direction for our dear country. We do not pretend to have all the answers to the questions which our present problems have put before our nation. We have come with the strongest determination to create an atmosphere in which positive efforts shall be given the necessary support for lasting solutions.

For matters of the moment which require immediate resolutions, we intend to pursue a determined programme of action. Major issues falling into this category have been identified and decisions taken on what should be done.

Firstly, the issue of political detainees or convicts of special military tribunals. The history of our nation had never recorded the degree of indiscipline and corruption as in the period between October 1979 and December 1983.

While this government recognises the bitterness created by the irresponsible excesses of the politicians, we consider it unfortunate that methods of such nature as to cause more bitterness were applied to deal with past misdeeds. We must never allow ourselves to lose our sense of natural justice. The innocent cannot suffer the crimes of the guilty. The guilty should be punished only as a lesson for the future. In line with this government’s intention to uphold fundamental human rights, the issue of detainees will be looked into with despatch.

As we do not intend to lead a country where individuals are under the fear of expressing themselves, the Public Officers Protection Against False Accusation Decree 4 of 1984 is hereby repealed. And finally, those who have been in detention under this decree are hereby unconditionally released. The responsibility of the media to disseminate information shall be exercised without undue hindrance. In that process, those responsible are expected to be forthright and to have the nation’s interest as their primary consideration.

The issue of decrees has generated a lot of controversies. It is the intention of this government to review all other decrees.

The last twenty months have not witnessed any significant changes in the national economy. Contrary to expectations, we have so far been subjected to a steady deterioration in the general standard of living; and intolerable suffering by the ordinary Nigerians have risen higher, scarcity of commodities has increased, hospitals still remain mere consulting clinics, while educational institutions are on the brink of decay. Unemployment has stretched to critical dimensions.

Due to the stalemate, which arose in negotiation with the International Monetary Fund, the former government embarked on a series of counter-trade agreements. Under the counter-trade agreements, Nigerians were forced to buy goods and commodities at higher prices than obtained in the international market. The government intends to review the whole issue of counter-trade.

A lot has been said and heard about our position with the International Monetary Fund. Although we formally applied to the fund in April 1983, no progress has as yet been made in the negotiation and a stalemate has existed for the last two years.

We shall break the deadlock that frustrated the negotiations with a view to evaluating more objectively both the negative and positive implications of reaching a mutual agreement with the Fund. At all times in the course of discussions, our representatives will be guided by the feelings and aspirations of the Nigerian people.

It is the view of this government that austerity without structural adjustment is not the solution to our economic predicament. The present situation whereby 44 per cent of our revenue earning is utilised to service debts is not realistic. To protect the danger this poses to the poor and the needy in our society, steps will be taken to ensure comprehensive strategy of economic reforms.

The crux of our economic problems has been identified to centre around four fundamental issues:
1. A decrease of our domestic production, while our population continues to increase.
2. Dependence on import for both consumer goods and raw materials for our industries.
3. A grossly unequal gap between the rich and the poor.
4. The large role played by the public sector in economic activity with hardly any concrete results to justify such a role.

These are the problems we must confront.

ON FOREIGN POLICY:
Nigeria’s foreign policy in the last 20 months has been characterised by inconsistency and incoherence. It has lacked the clarity to make us know where we stood on matters of international concern to enable other countries relate to us with seriousness. Our role as Africa’s spokesman has diminished because we have been unable to maintain the respect of African countries.

The ousted military government conducted our external relations by a policy of retaliatory reactions. Nigeria became a country that has reacted to given situations, rather than taking the initiative as it should and always been done. More so, vengeful considerations must not be the basis of our diplomacy. African problems and their solutions should constitute the premise of our foreign policy.

The realisation of the Organisation of African Unity of the Lagos Plan of Action for self-sufficiency and constructive co-operation in Africa shall be our primary pursuit.

The Economic Community of West African States must be reborn with the view to achieving the objective of regional integration. The problems of drought-stricken areas of Africa will be given more attention and sympathy, and our best efforts will be made to assist in their rehabilitation within the limits of our resources. Our membership of the United Nations Organisation will be made more practical and meaningful. The call for a new International Economic Order which lost its momentum in the face of the debt crisis will be made once again.

Nigeria hereby makes a renewed request to the Non-Aligned Movement to regroup and reinvigorate its determination to restructure the global economic system, while we appeal to the industrialized nations to positively consider the debt plight of the developing countries and assist in dealing with the dangers that face us. We shall remain members of the various multilateral institutions and inter-governmental organisations which we belong to and do what must be done to enhance the membership and participation within them.

Fellow Nigerians, this country has had since independence a history mixed with turbulence and fortune. We have witnessed our rise to greatness, followed with a decline to the state of a bewildered nation. Our human potentials have been neglected, our natural resources put to waste. A phenomenon of constant insecurity and overbearing uncertainty has become characteristic of our national existence.

My colleagues and I are determined to change the course of history. This government is determined to unite this country. We shall not allow anything to obstruct us. We recognise that a government, be it civilian or military, needs the consent of the people to govern if it is to reach its objective. We do not intend to rule by force. At the same time, we should not be expected to submit to unreasonable demands. Fundamental rights and civil liberties will be respected, but their exercise must not degenerate into irrational expression nor border on subversion.

The War Against Indiscipline will continue, but this time, in the minds and conduct of Nigerians, and not by way of symbolism or money-spending campaigns.

This government, on its part, will ensure that the leadership exhibits proper example. Criticisms of actions and decisions taken by us will be given necessary attention and where necessary changes made in accordance with what is expected of us.

Let me reiterate what we said in 1984: This generation of Nigerians and indeed future generations have no other country but Nigeria. We must all stay and salvage it together. This time it shall be pursued with deeper commitment and genuine sincerity.

There is a lot of work to be done by every single Nigerian. Let us all dedicate ourselves to the cause of building a strong, united and viable nation for the sake of our own lives and the benefits of posterity.

Finally, I wish to commend the members of the Armed Forces and the Nigeria Police for their mature conduct during the change.

I thank you all for your co-operation and understanding.

God bless Nigeria.

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